Health Status Among Pesticide Applicators at a Mango Plantation in India

Chandrasekharan Nair Kesavachandran, Subhodh Kumar Rastogi, Neeraj Mathur, Mohammad Kaleem Javed Siddiqui, Vipul Kumar Singh, Vipin Bihari, Ram Shankar Bharti

Abstract


Observations of mango plantation workers applying chemicals showed many were mixing pesticides without the appropriate personal protective equipment. Personal hygiene was lacking in that many applicators commonly ate and drank without previously washing their hands. Medical evaluation of thirty-four of these workers at a free health clinic shows pesticide exposure may be linked to health problems. Respiratory, gastrointestinal, ocular and dermal problems were observed; biochemical analysis shows decreased glutathione levels and increased levels of malondialdehyde thereby suggesting significant pesticide exposure. Our study clearly indicates that growers and workers applying pesticides in mango plantations need additional training on how to properly and safely use pesticides.

Keywords: health, occupational, safety, PPE, exposure, pesticide, medical, monitoring


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