Haematological Indicators Of Exposure To Petroleum Products In Petroleum Refining And Distribution Industry Workers In Nigeria | 21564
Journal of Clinical Toxicology
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Exposures to hazardous conditions in industrial environments often results in sundry health effects among
workers. This informed this study aimed at investigating the haematological effects of occupational activities in the petroleum
refining and distribution industry in Nigeria.
Haematological indices were investigated in whole blood, using routine laboratory methods. The study was
conducted on randomly selected workers of Port Harcourt Refining Company (PHRC) and Pipelines and Petroleum Product
Marketing Company (PPMC) both in Alesa-Eleme near Port Harcourt, Nigeria, as well as non-oil work civil servants serving
as control subjects.
Results and Conclusion:
Results showed that in oil workers, Erythrocyte Sedimentation Rate (ESR) ranged 1-100
(Mean:10.94?11.82mm/h) in oil workers, against 1-36 (Mean:6.6?7.81mm/h) in non-oil workers (P<0.05); hemoglobin (Hb):
7.60-21.10 (13.19?1.31g/dl) vs. 9.10-14.90(13.01?1.54g/dl) (P>0.05); Parked Cell Volume (PCV): 25.00-58.00 (43.31?4.09%)
vs. 30-49(42.70?5.01%) (P>0.05); Platelets: 75.00x109/L - 430.00x109/L(232.41?63.18x109/L) vs. 141.00 x109/L - 382.00
x109/L (239.23?57.30 x109/L) (P>0.05); White Blood Cell (WBC): 3.20 x109/L - 86.00x109/L(7.07?6.61 x109/L) vs. 4.9
x109/L - 11.00 x109/L(7.36?1.64 x109/L) (P>0.05). For the WBC differentials, the values were: lymphocytes: 18.00x109/L -
75.00x109/L (52.28?9.25x109/L) vs. 25.00x109/L - 57.00x109/L (41.60?10.16x109/L) (P<0.01); and granulocytes: 25.00x109/L
- 82.00x109/L (47.72?9.24x109/L) vs. 43 x109/L -75x109/L (58.40?10.16x109/L(P<0.01). Results showed that mean values
were still within parametric reference ranges. However, Compared to the controls, some variations were observed in the oil
workers: while granulocytes decreased significantly (P<0.01), significant increases occurred in ESR (P<0.05) and lymphocytes
(P<0.01) respectively- indicating a possibility of functional alteration following haematopoietic toxicity in the oil workers.
Findings suggest petroleum refining and distribution industry as being furnished with potentially haematotoxic substances, and
haematopoietic toxicity as part of potential health effects of exposures in this industry in Nigeria. Though gender classification
showed no appreciable impact, age grouping revealed that potential health effects indicated by the observed variations are
likely to rear up from age 40 yrs and above. That exposure classification showed no dose-dependent distribution pattern meant
that changes observed in age grouping (though insignificant), is simply an effect mediated by aging, implying that an aging
worker is more amenable to exposure effects, thus creating a need for frequent environmental and biological monitoring for a
safer and healthier workplace and workforce.
Tobias I Ndubuisi Ezejiofor obtained a BSc degree in Medical Laboratory Sciences (Rivers State University of Science & Technology, Port Harcourt), MSc Applied
Biochemistry (Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka), and PhD Environmental Health Biology (Federal University of Technology, Owerri(FUTO), Nigeria. He is licensed
by Environmental Health Officers Registration and Medical Laboratory Science Councils of Nigeria. A member of many professional associations and learned
societies, he is a Fellow of the College of Biomedical Engineering and Technology (FCBET), Nigeria. He is a senior Lecturer and Heads the Occupational and
Environmental Toxicology Research laboratory of the Department of Biotechnology, FUTO, Nigeria. He has published over 25 papers in reputed journals, and
serving as reviewer to many such international journals. He had given several conference papers locally and internationally.
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