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HOME > J Prev Med Public Health > Volume 42(4); 2009 > Article
English Abstract Seroprevalence and Risk Factors of Brucellosis among Slaughterhouse Workers in Korea.
Seok Ju Yoo, Young Sill Choi, Hyun Sul Lim, Kwan Lee, Mi Yeoun Park, Chaeshin Chu, Young A Kang
Journal of Preventive Medicine and Public Health 2009;42(4):237-242
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1Department of Preventive Medicine, Dongguk University College of Medicine, Korea.
2Division of Zoonoses, Korea National Institute of Health, Korea.
3Division of Epidemic Intelligence Service, Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Korea.

The incidence of zoonoses in Korea has increased recently. However, the study of high risk groups for zoonoses has not been conducted to date in Korea. Thus, we did this study to obtain data on brucellosis among slaughterhouse workers in Korea. METHODS: We evaluated the structure of slaughterhouses and the process of slaughtering by reviewing the relevant literature and doing field studies. We visited 73 slaughterhouses and 62 residual products handle houses across the country. In addition, we conducted a questionnaire survey of the work activities, and obtained blood samples in order to determine the seroprevalence and risk factors of brucellosis. The titers of brucellosis antibodies were measured using the standard tube agglutination test (SAT). We diagnosed subjects as seropositive for Brucellosis if the titers were more than 1:160. The data collected was evaluated using SPSS ver. 17.0. RESULTS: We included 1,503 subjects and obtained 1,482 blood samples among them: 849 workers involved in slaughtering, 351 handlers of residual products, 190 inspectors and their assistants, and 92 grading testers and their assistants. The seroprevalence of brucellosis among the slaughterhouse workers was 0.8% (95% CI=0.4-1.5). Broken down, the seroprevalence of brucellosis among the workers involved in slaughtering was 0.7% (95% CI=0.3-1.6), the handlers of residual products was 1.7% (95% CI=0.7-3.9) respectively. Risk factors for contracting brucellosis among slaughterhouse workers were being splashed with cattle blood around the mouth, cattle secretions around the body and not putting on protective apron while at work. CONCLUSIONS: An educational program is needed for high risk groups on zoonoses about the prevention of infection. Thus, effective working guidelines for workers who participate in the slaughter of animals must be developed in order to protect them from zoonoses.

JPMPH : Journal of Preventive Medicine and Public Health