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Korean Journal of Epidemiology 2005;27(1): 129-139.
Prevalence and Risk Factors of Green Tobacco Sickness among Korean Tobacco Harvesters, 2003.
Kwan Lee, Hyun Sul Lim
Department of Preventive Medicine, College of Medicine,Dongguk University. wisewine@donnguk.ac.kr
This study was carried out to understand the prevalence and risk factors of green tobacco sickness (GTS) among Korean tobacco harvesters.
The authors conducted a questionnaire among the tobacco harvesters (842 persons from 449 out of 500 tobacco harvesting households) in Cheongsong-gun for 4 days from Sep 1 to 4, 2003.
The study subjects contained 440 males and 402 females. The prevalence of GTS in 2003 was 39.2%, and was significantly higher in females (53.4%) than in males (25.6%, p<0.01). The incidence density of GTS according to the number of workdays in 2003 was 11.5 spells/100 person-days. The GTS symptoms reported by the tobacco harvesters in 2003 were nausea in 320 cases (97.0%), dizziness in 311 cases (94.2%), headache in 264 cases (80.0%) and vomiting in 209 cases (63.3%) etc. Through multiple logistic regression, the factors significantly associated with GTS were found. Odds ratio for smoking, age over sixty(compared with under forties), and working over 10 hours(compared with under 10 hours) were respectively 0.23 (95% CI: 0.16~0.33), 0.46 (95% CI: 0.23~0.93), and 1.53 (95% CI: 1.12~2.10).
Our studies before this, there were significant recall bias by time lag between harvesting period and survey time. We tried to study promptly after harvesting tobacco leaves to solve this recall bias. More extensive epidemiologic studies, and educations for harvesters are expected.
Keywords: Green tobacco sickness; Tobacco; Nicotine; Poisoning


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