Skin and respiratory disorders following the identification of disaster victims in Thailand

Anja Julie Huusom, Tove Agner, Vibeke Backer, Niels Ebbehøj, Peter Jacobsen

4 Citationer (Scopus)


The purpose was to assess disorders related to disaster victim identification (DVI) in a group of Danish forensic personnel that had performed disaster victim identification in Thailand after the 2004 tsunami. All individuals from the DVI team were screened using a questionnaire to identify disorders presenting in relation to DVI work in Thailand. All participants who had a positive screening result were examined clinically by an occupational physician and had a standard lung function test. Individuals with skin disorders were examined by a dermatologist and a skin patch was performed. Individuals with respiratory disorders were evaluated by a specialists in pulmonary medicine, based on the results of an extended lung function test and a skin prick test. Out of the 165 persons that worked with DVI in Thailand, 152 (92%) answered the questionnaire, and 24 underwent subsequent clinical examination. On examination, five persons were found to have skin disorders and four had airway disorders associated with the DVI work in Thailand. The allergy tests gave no support to the conditions being caused by exposure to disinfectants or other specific chemicals in any of the examined individuals. Working in disaster areas may cause or aggravate skin and airway disorders. It is suggested that an assessment of risk is performed before sending personnel abroad to challenging working conditions, and that a health check is carried out upon their return.
TidsskriftForensic Science, Medicine, and Pathology
Udgave nummer2
Sider (fra-til)114-117
Antal sider4
StatusUdgivet - 2011


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