Objective: To examine the association between occupation and chronic bronchitis among a cross section of Chinese women who participated in the Shanghai Women’s Health Study.
Methods: Cases were 4873 women who self-reported a physician-diagnosed bronchitis during adulthood. Controls were 9746 women randomly selected from Shanghai Women’s Health Study participants and matched with the cases by year of birth and age at diagnosis. Lifetime occupational histories were obtained. Logistic regressions were used to evaluate the association between chronic bronchitis and occupation, adjusting for smoking, education, family income, and concurrent asthma.
Results: We observed excess prevalence of bronchitis for textile occupation (odds ratio, OR = 1.09; 95% CI = 1.00–1.18) and industry (OR = 1.11; 95% CI = 1.03–1.19), welders (OR = 1.40; 95% CI = 1.01–1.92), packing and baling workers (OR = 1.39; 95% CI = 1.15–1.68), and warehousing industry (OR = 1.58; 95% CI = 1.08–2.30) We also identified several new associations that may warrant further exploration and confirmation, including employment in some metal fabrication industries, postal and telecommunication industry, and a few white-collar occupations and industries.
Conclusions: Our study indicates that the risk of chronic bronchitis among women may be increased in some occupations and industries.