Risk factors causing health disorders among workers involved in oil extraction and per-forming their working tasks outdoors during a cold season

View or download the full article: 
613.646: 622.276

E.M. Polyakova1, 2, V.P. Chashchin1, 2, A.V. Mel'tser1


1North-Western State Medical University named after I.I. Mechnikov, 41 Kirochnaya avenue, Saint Petersburg, 195067, Russian Federation
2North-West Scientific Center for Hygiene and Public Health, Russia, 191036, Saint Petersburg, 2 Sovetskaya Str., 4


The research focuses on a vital issue related to preserving health of workers who perform their working tasks outdoors in regions with cold climate.

Our research goal was to examine influence exerted by working conditions and working experience length on prevalence of chronic diseases and other health disorders among workers who performed their working tasks outdoors during a cold season.
We accomplished a cross (one-moment) epidemiologic study aimed at assessing adverse impacts exerted by weather and climatic factors on workers who performed their working tasks on open grounds in regions with cold climate. We conducted hygienic assessment of working conditions for 1.647 workers employed at oil-extracting enterprise in Nizhnevartovsk and ana-lyzed results obtained during their regular medical check-ups.

We analyzed average number of diseases per 1 worker; it varied from (0.45 ± 0.06) among workers dealing with electrogas welding to (0.27 ± 0.022) among compressor unit operators. Each additional 5 years of working experience resulted in an ascending trend for a number of detected diseases per 1 worker (p = 0.0015).

We also revealed that workers who maintained oil-extracting machinery ran the greatest health risks as they had to spend the greatest amount of time outdoors (on average, 27 hours out of 40 hours per 1 working week) during a cold season. Besides, our research showed that exposure to cold potentiated adverse impacts exerted by other occupation factors on workers’ health. Thus, given the same amount of time spent outdoors during a cold season for different occupational groups, welders ran the greatest risks of circulatory system diseases (AR = 2.0), ear and mastoid diseases (AR = 5.0), digestive organs diseases (AR = 2.2) due to the air at their working places being contaminated with welding aerosol.

When working tasks are performed outdoors in regions with cold climate, it leads to elevated risks of chronic health disorders that occur due to long-term occupational exposure to uncontrollable meteorological factors and simultaneous air contamination with welding aerosols.

working conditions, oil-industry workers, adverse working conditions, work on open grounds, cold, workers’ health, cold injuries, cold stress, cold and carbohydrate metabolism
Polyakova E.M., Chashchin V.P., Mel'tser A.V. Risk factors causing health disorders among workers involved in oil ex-traction and performing their working tasks outdoors during a cold season. Health Risk Analysis, 2019, no. 4, pp. 84–92. DOI: 10.21668/health.risk/2019.4.09.eng
  1. Usloviya truda, proizvodstvennyi travmatizm (po otdel'nym vidam ekonomicheskoi deyatel'nosti) [Working conditions and occupational injuries (as per specific economic activities)]. Federal'naya sluzhba gosudarstvennoi statistiki, 2019. Available at: http://www.gks.ru/wps/wcm/connect/rosstat_main/rosstat/ru/statistics/wag... (19.06.2019) (in Russian).
  2. Karimova L.K., Kaptsov V.A., Salimgareeva T.M., Mavrina L.N., Gimaeva Z.F., Beigul N.A. Health risk assessment of violations of workers of enterprises of fuel and energy complex. Zdorov'e naseleniya i sreda obitaniya, 2017, vol. 289, no. 4, pp. 25–30 (in Russian).
  3. Petrone P., Asensio J.A., Marini C.P. Management of accidental hypothermia and cold injury. Curr. Probl. Surg., 2014, vol. 51, no. 10, pp. 417–431. DOI: 10.1067/j.cpsurg.2014.07.004
  4. Romu T., Vavruch C., Dahlqvist-Leinhard O., Tallberg J., Dahlström N., Persson A., Heglind M., Lidell M.E. [et al.]. A randomized trial of cold-exposure on energy expenditure and supraclavicular brown adipose tissue volume in humans. Metabolism, 2016, vol. 65, no. 6, pp. 926–934. DOI: 10.1016/j.metabol.2016.03.012
  5. Sarychev A.S., Gudkov A.B., Popova O.N., Ivchenko E.V., Belyaev V.R. The characteristic of kompensatory-adaptive reactions of external respiration at oil industry workers in dynamics expeditionary rotational team work in the Polar region. Vestnik Rossiiskoi voenno-meditsinskoi akademii, 2011, vol. 3, no. 35, pp. 163–166 (in Russian).
  6. Maslov L.N., Tsibul'nikov S.Yu., Naryzhnaya N.V., Ivanov V.V, Tsibul'nikova M.R. Chronic exposure to cold is adaptation without stress. Patologicheskaya fiziologiya i eksperimental'naya terapiya, 2016, vol. 60, no. 1, pp. 28–31 (in Russian).
  7. Ingram B.J., Raymond T.J. Recognition and treatment of freezing and nonfreezing cold injuries. Curr. Sports. Med. Rep., 2013, vol. 12, no. 2, pp. 125–130. DOI: 10.1249/JSR.0b013e3182877454
  8. Gudkov A.B., Popova O.N. Vneshnee dykhanie cheloveka na Evropeiskom Severe [External respiration in European Northern regions]. Arkhangel'sk, Izdatel`stvo Severnogo gosudarstvennogo meditsinskogo universiteta Publ., 2009, 242 p. (in Russian)
  9. Bashkireva A.S., Artamonova V.G., Khavinson V.Kh. Productive aging or «healthy worker effect»? Retrospective analysis of morbidity with temporal workability loss in motor transport drivers. Uspekhi Gerontologii, 2009, vol. 22, no. 4, pp. 539–547 (in Russian).
  10. Maksimov S.A. Healthy worker effect in epidemiological researches. Meditsina v Kuzbasse, 2015, vol. 14, no. 2, pp. 10–15 (in Russian).
  11. Ageev F.T., Smirnova M.D., Svirida O.N., Fofanova T.V., Vitsenya M.V., Blankova Z.N., Mikhailov G.V., Lankin V.Z. [et al.]. Impact of a cold wave on disease course, hemodynamics, carbohydrate metabolism, and blood rheological properties in cardiac patents. Terapevticheskii arkhiv, 2015, vol. 87, no. 9, pp. 11–16 (in Russian).
  12. Nagibovich O.A., Ukhovsky D.M., Zhekalov A.N., Tkachuk N.A., Arzhavkina L.G., Bogdanova E.G., Murzina E.V., Belikova T.M. Mechanisms of hypoxia in Arctic zone of Russian Federation. Vestnik rossiiskoi voenno-meditsinskoi akademii, 2016, no. 2 (54), pp. 202–205 (in Russian).
  13. Maslov L.N., Vychuzhanova E.A. Influence of long-term adaptation to cold on the state of cardiovascular system. Rossiiskii fiziologicheskii zhurnal im. I.M. Sechenova, 2013, vol. 99, no. 10, pp. 1113–1124 (in Russian).
  14. Kim F., Nichol G., Maynard C., Hallstrom A., Kudenchuk P.G., Rea T., Copas M.C., Carlbom D. [et al.]. Effect of Prehospital Induction of Mild Hypothermia on Survival and Neurological Status among Adults with Cardiac Arrest: A Random-ized Clinical Trial. JAMA, 2014, vol. 311, no. 1, pp. 45–52. DOI: 10.1001/jama.2013.282173
  15. Konduktivnaya poterya slukha: kakoe lechenie naznachayut pri tugoukhosti 1 stepeni [Conduction hearing loss: how to treat primary hearing loss]. Lechenie zabolevanii ukha, gorla, nosa, 2019. Available at: https://prolor.ru/u/bolezni/tugo-uxost/konduktivnaya.html (16.10.2019) (in Russian).
  16. Sitnikov V.P., El'-Refai Kh. Modern aspects of surgical treatment of patients with chronic suppurative otitis media. Problemy zdorov'ya i ekologii, 2010, vol. 24, no. 2, pp. 37–41 (in Russian).
  17. Chashchin V.P., Syurin S.A., Gudkov A.B., Popova O.N., Voronin A.Yu. Influence of industrial pollution of ambient air on health of workers engaged into open air activities in cold conditions. Meditsina truda i promyshlennaya ekologiya, 2014, no. 9, pp. 20–26 (in Russian).
  18. Chashchin V.P., Gudkov A.B., Chashchin M.V., Popova O.N. Predictive assessment of individual human susceptibility to damaging cold exposure. Ekologiya cheloveka, 2017, no. 5, pp. 3–13 (in Russian).
  19. Jurkovich G.J. Environmental cold-induced injury. Surg Clin North Am, 2007, vol. 87, no. 1, pp. 247–267.
  20. Revich B., Shaposhnikov D. Temperature-induced excess mortality in Moscow. International Journal Biometeorology, 2008, no. 52, pp. 367–374.

You are here