The aim of this study was to investigate the health effects of electromagnetic fields (EMFs) among female operators of plastic welding machines.
We examined 180 female operators in shoe factories as the exposed group, and 349 female workers from nearby supermarkets as the unexposed group.
The mean radiation levels in the vicinity of the welding machines ranged from 51.3 to 368.9 V/m. The prevalence of neurovegetative symptoms increased with higher EMFs exposures (P < 0.05). The prevalence of menstrual disorder was 12.0% in the unexposed group, but was 26.8% and 33.8% in low and high-exposure groups, respectively (P < 0.01). Exposure–response relationships were found between cumulate exposure and neurovegetative symptoms and menstrual disorder (P < 0.05). Serum progesterone (P4) was significantly lower in the exposed groups (P < 0.01).
EMFs exposure was associated with adverse health effects, including neurovegetative symptoms, menstrual disorder, and low level of P4.
Fuzhou Center for Disease Control and Prevention (Dr Xu, Zhang); School of Public Health, Fujian Medical University, Fuzhou, P. R of China (Dr Xu, Chen, Ren, Lin); Department of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences, University of Louisville, Kentucky (Dr Zhang).
Address correspondence to: Youqiong Xu, MD, PhD, Fuzhou Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 95 Qunzhong Road, Fuzhou, Fujian 350004, China (firstname.lastname@example.org).
This study was sponsored by the Institute of Science and Technology Fund (Grant 2005-17) and Natural Science Foundation in Fujian (2009J01323), China.
Conflict of interest: None declared.