Evaluation of haematological, hepatic and renal functions of petroleum tanker drivers in Lagos, Nigeria
AbstractBackground: Hydrocarbons which are among the major components of petroleum products are considered toxic and have been implicated in a number of human diseases. Tanker drivers are continuously exposed to hydrocarbons by inhalation and most of these drivers do not use protective devices to prevent inhalation of petroleum products; nor do they visit hospital regularly for routine check-up. Objective: In view of this occupational hazard, we investigated the haematological, renal and hepatic functions of workers of petroleum tankers drivers in Lagos, Nigeria. Method: Twenty-five tanker drivers’ and fifteen control subjects were randomly selected based on the selection criteria of not smoking and working for minimum of 5 years as petroleum tanker driver. The liver, renal and haematological parameters were analyzed using automated clinical and haematological analyzers while the lipid peroxidation and antioxidant level tests were assayed using standard methods. Results: There were significant (p ≤ 0.05) increases in the levels of serum alanine amino transferase (31.14±13.72; 22.38±9.89), albumin (42.50±4.69; 45.36±1.74) and alkaline phosphatase (84.04±21.89; 62.04±23.33) of petroleum tanker drivers compared with the controls. A significant (p≤0.05) increase in the levels of creatinine, urea and white blood cells of the tanker drivers, compared with the controls, were also obtained. Conclusion: The results have enormous health implications of continuous exposure to petroleum products reflected hepatic and renal damage of petroleum tanker drivers. Therefore, there is need for this group of workers to be sensitized on the importance of protective devises, regular medical checkup and management. Conflict of Interest: The authors have no conflict of interest to declare.
Keywords: petroleum tanker drivers, hydrocarbons, renal, liver functions, oxidative stress
African Health sciences Vol 14 No. 1 March 2014
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