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The Scientific World Journal
Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 974104, 7 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2014/974104
Research Article

Blood Lead Levels and Health Problems of Lead Acid Battery Workers in Bangladesh

1Department of Occupational & Environmental Health, Bangladesh University of Health Sciences, Dhaka 1216, Bangladesh
2Department of Occupational & Environmental Health, National Institute of Preventive and Social Medicine, Dhaka 1212, Bangladesh
3Environmental Health Unit, World Health Organization, Dhaka 1000, Bangladesh
4Department of Community Dentistry, Dhaka Dental College, Dhaka 1206, Bangladesh
5Addin Women’s Medical College, Dhaka 1217, Bangladesh

Received 31 August 2013; Accepted 24 December 2013; Published 25 February 2014

Academic Editors: B. V. Babu and Z. A. Stein

Copyright © 2014 Sk. Akhtar Ahmad et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Introduction. Use of lead acid battery (LAB) in Bangladesh has risen with sharp rise of motor vehicles. As result, manufacture of LAB is increasing. Most of the lead used by these industries comes from recycling of LAB. Workers in LAB industry are at risk of exposure lead and thus development of lead toxicity. Objective. The objective of this study was to measure the blood lead concentration and to assess the magnitude of health problems attributable to lead toxicity among the LAB manufacturing workers. Methods. A cross-sectional study was conducted among the workers of LAB manufacturing industries located in Dhaka city. Result. Mean blood lead level (BLL) among the workers was found to be high. They were found to be suffering from a number of illnesses attributable to lead toxicity. The common illnesses were frequent headache, numbness of the limbs, colic pain, nausea, tremor, and lead line on the gum. High BLL was also found to be related to hypertension and anemia of the workers. Conclusion. High BLL and illnesses attributable to lead toxicity were prevalent amongst workers of the LAB manufacturing industries, and this requires attention especially in terms of occupational hygiene and safety.