Association of Occupational Exposures and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Morbidity

Jennifer S. Rous, Peter S.J. Lees, Kirsten Koehler, Jessie P. Buckley, Lesliam Quirós-Alcalá, Mei Lan K. Han, Eric A. Hoffman, Wassim Labaki, R. Graham Barr, Stephen P. Peters, Robert Paine, Cheryl Pirozzi, Christopher B. Cooper, Mark T. Dransfield, Alejandro P. Comellas, Richard E. Kanner, M. Bradley Drummond, Nirupama Putcha, Nadia N. Hansel, Laura M. Paulin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective The aim of the study is to determine whether aggregate measures of occupational exposures are associated with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) outcomes in the Subpopulations and Intermediate Outcome Measures in COPD study cohort. Methods Individuals were assigned to six predetermined exposure hazard categories based on self-reported employment history. Multivariable regression, adjusted for age, sex, race, current smoking status, and smoking pack-years determined the association of such exposures to odds of COPD and morbidity measures. We compared these with the results of a single summary question regarding occupational exposure. Results A total of 2772 individuals were included. Some exposure estimates, including "gases and vapors"and "dust and fumes"exposures resulted in associations with effect estimates over two times the estimated effect size when compared with a single summary question. Conclusions Use of occupational hazard categories can identify important associations with COPD morbidity while use of single-point measures may underestimate important differences in health risks.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)E443-E452
JournalJournal of occupational and environmental medicine
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1 2023


  • COPD
  • clinical outcomes
  • observational study
  • occupational history
  • respiratory disease

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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