Respiratory symptoms and dust exposure in Lancashire cotton and man-made fiber mill operatives

David Fishwick, Angela M. Fletcher, C. Anthony Pickering, Robert Mcl Niven, E. Brian Faragher

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    A cross-sectional study of work-related symptoms and cotton dust exposure was made in 404 man-made fiber and 1,048 cotton operatives in Lancashire spinning mills; 39 cotton-exposed operatives (3.7%) had symptoms of byssinosis. This was associated on regression analysis with cumulative lifetime cotton dust exposure (p <0.001), total years spent carding (p <0.001), and currently working in the carding area (p = 0.0041). Smoking habit did not differ significantly between byssinotic and nonbyssinotic workers. Other work-related symptoms were common: chronic bronchitis (CB) and persistent cough. The prevalence of CB correlated positively with dust exposure (r = 0.59). Cotton dust sampling was performed in the work area (SDPRES) and personal breathing zone (PD1). A retrospective estimate of lifetime cotton dust exposure based on SDPRES correlated best with the prevalence of byssinosis (r = 0.797), although correlations with PD1 (r = 0.709) and SDPRES (r = 0.594) were also significant.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)441-447
    Number of pages6
    JournalAmerican Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - Aug 1994


    • Adult
    • analysis: Air Pollutants, Occupational
    • epidemiology: Byssinosis
    • Cross-Sectional Studies
    • analysis: Dust
    • epidemiology: England
    • Female
    • Gossypium
    • Humans
    • Male
    • Regression Analysis
    • Smoking
    • Textile Industry


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