Background: Foundry work is associated with serious occupational hazards. Although several studies have investigated the health risks associated with foundry work, the results of these studies have been inconsistent with the exception of an increased lung cancer risk. The current study evaluated the mortality of Korean foundry workers due to malignant and non-malignant diseases. Methods: This study is part of an ongoing investigation of Korean foundry workers. To date, we have observed more than 150,000 person-years in male foundry production workers. In the current study, we stratified mortality ratios by the following job categories: melting-pouring, molding-coremaking, fettling, and uncategorized production work. We calculated standard mortality ratios (SMR) of foundry workers compare to general Korean men and relative risk (RR) of mortality of foundry production workers reference to non-production worker, respectively. Results: Korean foundry production workers had a significantly higher risk of mortality due to malignant disease, including stomach (RR: 3.96; 95% CI: 1.41-11.06) and lung cancer (RR: 2.08; 95% CI: 1.01-4.30), compared with non-production workers. High mortality ratios were also observed for non-malignant diseases, including diseases of the circulatory (RR: 1.92; 95% CI: 1.18-3.14), respiratory (RR: 1.71; 95% CI: 1.52-21.42 for uncategorized production worker), and digestive (RR: 2.27; 95% CI: 1.22-4.24) systems, as well as for injuries (RR: 2.36; 95% CI: 1.52-3.66) including suicide (RR: 3.64; 95% CI: 1.32-10.01). Conclusion: This study suggests that foundry production work significantly increases the risk of mortality due to some kinds of malignant and non-malignant diseases compared with non-production work.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)