Objectives: In this study, we evaluated the prevalence of work-related asthma-like symptoms and possible risk factors among florists in Turkey.
Methods: We collected questionnaire data from 128 florists, and investigated occupational history and respiratory, ocular, dermal, and nasal symptoms. We evaluated pulmonary function tests with spirometry and atopy by using the skin-prick test. Possible risk factors were analyzed by age-adjusted, smoking-adjusted, and gender-adjusted logistic regression models comparing symptomatic and asymptomatic individuals.
Results: The prevalence of work-related asthma-like symptoms was 14.1% (18 patients). We observed excess risk with a high work intensity (odds ratio [OR], 7.3; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.1 to 51.8) and long work duration (OR, 5.1; 95% CI, 1.2 to 21.6). Florists with work-related asthma-like symptoms were 5.9 times more likely (95% CI, 1.4 to 24.3) to have a positive skin test response to a flower mix allergen. We also observed an excess risk for work-related asthma-like symptoms among those with allergic rhinitis (OR, 13.2; 95% CI, 3.1 to 56.4) and conjunctivitis (OR, 8.4; 95% CI, 2.4 to 29.2).
Conclusion: The most prominent risk factors in florists were work intensity, work duration, and specific atopy.