Health problems of 197 female beedi rollers were studied in Patna, Bihar, India to ascertain the effects of beedi rolling on hematological parameters, liver function and on the eyes, respiratory, gastrointestinal and nervous systems. The study found that more than 70 percent of the beedi rollers suffered from eye, gastrointestinal and nervous problems while more than 50 percent of the respondents suffered from respiratory problems, mostly throat burning and cough. More than 75 percent of the respondents faced osteological problems. Total RBC, WBC and platelet counts of the beedi rollers were significantly lower in comparison to the control subjects. Differential leucocyte count showed significantly risen lymphocytes and eosinophils and lowered neutrophils and monocytes in the beedi rollers as compared to the control group. Hemoglobin levels were lower among beedi rollers compared to the control group. SGPT (ALT) enzyme concentration, a parameter of liver dysfunction, was significantly increased in the beedi rollers compared to the control group. The study revealed that women beedi rollers face numerous health problems possibly due to direct inhalation of tobacco flakes and dust. .


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  • Received: 16 May 2012
  • Accepted: 16 May 2012
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