Article Type

Research Article

Publication Title

Online Journal of Health and Allied Sciences


Background: Hearing impairment is one of the major health problems under the paradigm of occupational health. Mine workers are vulnerable to hearing impairment due to the nature of work, inadequate knowledge of sound hazards and limited access to protective devices. However, the cause of such health problems in India have rarely been explored. Present study aimed to find out hearing threshold of the study population, the level of noise in the mine areas and the relationship of different concomitants on hearing thresholds of the workers. Methods: Cross-sectional data on audiometric measurements, age and work duration in stone mining work were collected from 189 adult Santal stone mine workers (i.e. Group I= working and residing in stone mines and Group II = working in stone mines but residing outside stone mines) of Birbhum district, West Bengal. Data on noise pollution level were also collected. All the data were collected following standard techniques and instruments. Descriptive statistics, cross-tabulation and multivariate logistic regression analysis were performed. Results: Hearing threshold was higher in Group I than Group II; in aged workers than younger workers and working for long duration than short duration in mines. The level of noise pollution inside the stone mine area was above the recommended limit. The most important concomitants of hearing threshold were residence and work in stone mines. Conclusion: The workers engaged in stone mine work and residing inside mine area were more susceptible to hearing impairment. The intensity of the risk further increases with the advancement of age.

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