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Prevalence of liver diseases as referred by people living in the Santos and São Vicente Estuary

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Abstract

The Santos and São Vicente Estuary has suffered extensively over the years from irregular industrial deposits. The present study aimed to evaluate liver disease prevalence and potential associated risk factors in four of the Estuary’s areas (Pilões and Água-Fria, Cubatão Center, Continental São Vicente, and Guarujá) and a reference area (Bertioga). This study consisted of a cross-sectional study design, in which a questionnaire was used to collect information in 820 households at each of the study areas. The proportion of total liver diseases, hepatitis, cirrhosis, and cancer (liver, biliary tract, and pancreas) per area were estimated. Pearson’s chi-square test and two proportion differences test were applied in order to evaluate associations between disease occurrence and areas and to test differences between two proportions, respectively. Single and multiple logistic regression models were applied to assess associations between disease prevalence and the different study areas. Liver disease prevalence was 1.5 % among all inhabitants and 1.4 % among those without any type of exposure. Among those who reported the presence of liver disease, a higher percentage of the participants that reported hepatitis (27.7 %) or other liver disease (48.7 %) did not report occupational or alcohol exposures. Hepatitis (77.8 %) was the most reported disease, and a statistical association between living in Pilões and Água-Fria and the occurrence of hepatitis was observed (Pearson’s χ 2: z = 18.1; p = 0.001). The consumption of locally-produced groceries (2.88; CI: 1.24–6.70) and water (5.88; CI: 2.24–15.45) were shown to be risk factors for the occurrence of liver disease. Thus, environmental exposure is still a public health problem present in the estuary region.

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Correspondence to Daniele Fernandes Pena Carvalho.

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Responsible editor: Philippe Garrigues

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Carvalho, D.F.P., Guimarães, M.T., Ribeiro, T.S. et al. Prevalence of liver diseases as referred by people living in the Santos and São Vicente Estuary. Environ Sci Pollut Res 22, 14579–14588 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-014-3073-7

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Keywords

  • Cross-sectional studies
  • Estuary pollution
  • Environmental pollution
  • Liver diseases
  • Hepatitis
  • Liver cirrhosis