Study protocol to determine the effects of solvents on lung function among paint industry workers in Mauritius: A cross-sectional study

Mohammad Yusuf Khan Yarroo, Phoka C. Rathebe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: The effects of exposure to solvents in paints have been widely studied, but very little information is at hand with only a small number of studies carried out on pulmonary function of paint industry workers. The aim of this study is to determine the respiratory effects of exposure to solvents among workers of the paint industry in Mauritius. Design and methods: A quantitative cross-sectional study will be conducted in three paint factories across Mauritius. 388 participants would be selected using simple random sampling and be subjected to a pre-designed questionnaire for data collection. Lung function test using a spirometer will also be conducted. Data analysis will be performed using Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS v26.0). The exposed workers will be classified by shift duration, that is, individuals with weekly solvent exposure of ≤12 and >12 h respectively. Using multivariable regression analysis, odds ratio will be calculated to analyze the relationship between the dependent variable (hours of exposure to solvents) and independent variables while adjusting for socio-demographic factors. Independent t-test will also be used to identify any difference between the means of lung function tests and the two exposure groups. Based on pre-observation in the three paint industries, it is anticipated that male workers could be found less likely to be exposed to solvents as compared to female workers. Also, workers with a level of education below secondary and lower secondary categories could have a higher likelihood of being exposed ≤12 h/week shift. Those who are aware of occupational hazards and could indicate to have used personal protective equipment (PPE) could be less likely exposed to solvents. Expected Impact of the study for Public Health: This study has been approved by the Ethics Committee of the Faculty of Health Sciences at the University of Johannesburg- ethics clearance number: REC-919-2021. The results of this study will be made available to all stakeholders involved in Health and Safety in the Mauritius. Meetings with professional in the field, especially the concerned paint factories, have been arranged to discuss the impact of solvent exposure and propose remedial actions to protect the workers.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Public Health Research
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2022


  • Mauritius
  • PPE
  • Solvents
  • lung function test
  • occupational hazard
  • occupational lung disease
  • paint industries
  • spirometer

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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