An epidemiological study to evaluate morbidity patterns among wood workers belonging to unorganized sector

Aritra K. Bose, Dilip D. Kadam, Anusha C. P.


Background: Wood workers are predisposed to many occupational diseases. Studying work place environment and its association with the morbidities would provide practical insights to promote the health and prevent disease in wood workers. Present study intends to study the epidemiological determinants of health and morbidity in wood workers.

Methods: Quantitative method of research is used. All One hundred and five wood workers in the study area were recruited after taking informed consent. A semi-structured, pre-validated, questionnaire consisting of questions on sociodemographic profile, working pattern, morbidities experienced and working environment was prepared. Data was collected using one to one interview at their workplace. Environmental factors like iIllumination (In LUX) and noise level (in db) at the work place was measured using a Lux meter and sound level meter respectively. Association between different variables were analysed using Chi-square test or t-test wherever applicable.

Results: Participants were all male belonging to economically productive age group. They were predominantly Muslims, belonging to lower socioeconomic status. Morbidities experienced by the wood workers were musculoskeletal pain (52%), skin problems (57%), eye problems (57.14%) and ear problems (32.38%). Inadequate illumination (<100 LUX) and noise levels more than 90 db were significantly associated with increased accidents and ear morbidities respectively.

Conclusions: Poor working environment and non-compliance with the working standards prescribed by ILO (Indian Labour Organisation) are associated with morbidities among the workers. Environmental modification, use of protective devices, availability of basic minimum facilities for working and continuous monitoring of the workplaces by competent authority would help in decreasing the prevalence of morbidities among woodworkers.


Wood, Dust, Unorganised sector, Occupational exposure

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