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                                                    International Journal of Occupational Medicine and Environmental Health 2009;22(3):III–VI

The current issue of the International Journal of Occupa-           physiology and thermal comfort at rest and physical effort
tional Medicine and Environmental Health presents one               to answer the question which fabric is better, a natural or
review paper, eight original papers and one case report.            a synthetic one. The results showed that wearing clothes
The Bhopal gas industrial disaster took place in 1984.              made of different fabrics had some influence on the car-
An explosion at a pesticide plant resulted in a release             diovascular and respiratory parameters during physical
of 30–40 tons of toxic gas, methyl isocyanate, spreading            effort but it did not have any effect on the psychomotor
over 30 square miles, which brought death to 2500–6000              skills. The perception of physiological comfort by the sub-
and injury to over 200 000 people. The authors, Prady­              jects wearing coarse wool or acrylic depended on their
umna K. Mishra et al., made a comprehensive review of the           physiological state and differed at rest and after the physi-
clinical symptoms of the victims and of the experimental            cal effort. The authors presume that the course of physi-
findings which have been collected for as long as 25 years.         ological processes depends on the kind of clothing a given
Clinical studies have shown severe chronic obstructive pul-         person is wearing. However, it is not possible to clearly de-
monary disease, keratopathy and corneal opacity in the              fine which of the two clothing materials: natural — wool,
exposed cohorts. Survivors continue to experience a higher          or synthetic — acrylic is better.
incidence of diverse health problems including febrile ill-         Karolina Dżaman et al. compared the functioning of the
nesses, respiratory, neurological, psychiatric, ophthalmic          taste and smell senses among workers at a sewage treat-
and reproductive symptoms. The authors recommend                    ment plant and landfill and among laboratory staff. The
long-term monitoring of the affected area and the use of            authors noted a higher risk of smell and taste disturbances
appropriate research methodology including well-designed            in sewage and landfill workers. The sour taste sense ap-
cohort studies, case-control studies for rare conditions,           peared to be most sensitive after short-term exposure
characterization of personal exposure and accident analysis       
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