Mahmoud S. El-Saadawy, Enayat M. Attwa, Ihab M. El-Tayeb, Marwa M. Zalat


Background: Car mechanics are exposed to a wide range of industrial chemicals which result in
various forms of skin diseases and conditions such as various types of dermatitis, skin sensitization,
eczema, oil acne, etc.). Exposure to organic solvents especially benzene, has been shown to have a
deleterious effect on bone marrow. Skin diseases, particularly chronic skin diseases, have a negative
impact on patient's quality of life. In addition quality of life is impaired in persons with anemia which
produces a high level of fatigue. Objectives: The objectives of this study were to (1) Determine
prevalence and types of dermatoses and hematological disorders among car mechanics in Zagazig
City, (2) Study some risk factors associated with the detected skin and blood disorders, and (3) Clarify
the effects of skin and blood disorders on the workers, quality of life. Methods: A comparative crosssectional
study was conducted in 105 car mechanics in car repair shops in Zagazig City and 110
unexposed workers from faculty of medicine and some school workers. Data were collected by a
questionnaire, clinical examination and laboratory investigation, and those who were diagnosed
clinically or by investigation were subjected to a questionnaire to study the effects of these disorders
on their quality of life. Results: The total prevalence of dermatoses among car mechanics (57.1%) was
significantly higher compared with their controls (18.2%). The majority of car mechanics had contact
dermatitis (25.7%), followed by wounds &burns (10.5%) and oil acne (4.8%). The self-reported
prevalence of HE among car mechanics (23.8%) was significantly higher when compared with
controls (8.2%). A significant association was noticed between prevalence of dermatoses and age,
duration of work, childhood eczema and benzene hand washing. The most dermatological disorders
had significant effects in lowering QOL were eczema, wounds & burns. Hematological parameters
showed that car mechanics had decreased erythrocyte, hemoglobin, hematocrit values, lymphocyte and
platelets levels, but increased neutrophil levels. There was a significant association between
hematological disorders and limitation of different quality of life domains especially physical
functioning, fatigue and body pain. The majority of the studied groups had moderate impairment of
the quality of life, while the minority had a bad effect on quality of life. Conclusion: Car repair
workshop environment has adverse effects on health status of workers. Car mechanics had many
dermatological disorders especially hand eczema and majority of them were anemic. The most
important risk factor for dermatoses and hematological disorders were benzene or gasoline hand
washing. These adverse effects are due to lack of safety measures, basic health awareness and all of
which had significant effects on QOL.
Keywords: Car mechanics, Dermatoses, Hematological disorders & Quality of life

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