Healthcare workers may be exposed to a variety of biological hazards. Although many studies have shown that some immunological alterations were related to work stress and sleep disorders, few studies investigated effects of shiftwork on the immunological system.The aim of the study was to compare the immune status of a group of nurses on shiftwork with that of nurses working only day shifts.A total of 138 nurses were evaluated at baseline and after a year of follow-up, via tests for perceived stress, daytime sleepiness, number of lymphocytes and subpopulation of CD3+, CD4+, CD8+-CD57+, CD19+ and CD56+, cytotoxic activity and lympho-prolferative response of NK cells, serum concentrations of IL-1beta, IL-6, INFgamma and TNFalpha.No significant alterations of any of the studied parameters were found both at baseline and after a year of follow-up. The biological hazards for nurses do not seem to be increased by shiftwork.
Biological risk and health care workers: analysis of the effects of work chronobiology on the immune system / A., Copertaro; Bracci, Massimo; Amati, Monica; E., Mocchegiani; M., Barbaresi; B., Copertaro; Santarelli, Lory. - In: LA MEDICINA DEL LAVORO. - ISSN 0025-7818. - 101:(2010), pp. 427-436.