ESTABLISHMENT OF AN INTERVENTION HEALTH EDUCATION PROGRAM FOR ENVIRONMENTAL, HEALTH PROMOTION OF ALUMINUM WORKERS
Journal of Environmental Science
Even though aluminum is not considered to be a heavy metal like lead, it can be toxic in excessive amounts and even in small amounts if it is deposited in the brain. Many of the symptoms of aluminum toxicity mimic those of Alzheimer's disease and osteoporosis. Colic, rickets, gastrointestinal problems, interference with the metabolism of calcium, extreme nervousness, anemia, headaches, decreased liver and kidney function, memory loss, speech problems, softening of the bones, and aching muscles
... an all be caused by aluminum toxicity. This study included 40 workers in an aluminum factory in 6 th October District in Egypt with mean aluminum concentration in the different departments in the factory was within permissible exposure level "PEL". Data were collected through a previously prepared questionnaire which consists of three parts. The first part was concerned with demographic data such as age and nationality. The second part was concerned with occupational data such as working hours, working years, smoking, and diseases. The third part concerned with knowledge, attitude and practice about aluminum hazards. The studied workers have reported the exposure to aluminum inside workplace during polishing and during smelting (85 % and 82.5 % respectively). However, majority of workers also reported an extra workplace exposure to aluminum with most of them in form of using alum. Utensils followed by use of food additives containing aluminum (72.5 % and 70 % respectively). By implementing the intervention study through the comprehensive health education program to workers in the factory, there was a statistically significant reduction in the mean serum aluminum before and after intervention (13.95 and 13.75 up/dl respectively) (P<0.01). Also, the intervention study has improved significantly the knowledge of workers toward the use of PPD by 45.5 % (P<0.01). At the same time, the knowledge of workers toward the exposure to the extra work sources of aluminum was significantly improved as regards aluminum Contained medications and aluminum Containing deodorants by 50 % and 62.5 % respectively (P<0.01). Finally Special safety precautions and educational programs are also needed to limit the aluminum exposure in this industrial group.