Review of Occupational Heat Stress over the Past 50 Years in Iran
Thermal stress is a well-recognized health hazard in the workplace. In addition to the health deficits, working in the heat can affect significantly on the productivity of some industries located in rough environments. The current indices used to evaluate the environment are either flawed or difficult to implement. The focus of this review is upon heat stress indices used in Iran to evaluate occupational thermal stress. In this systematic review, the research team searched both bibliographic, citation databases for related heat stress articles in Iran over the past 50 yr. Different search engines were used, and the search strategy was the same in the all searched databases. Twenty papers reviewed through bibliographic database and 30 papers reviewed through citation database. Then the total identified was 50 papers and thesis. Fifteen duplicate papers were removed and finally, 35 were included. In particular, there is a review about the wet-bulb globe temperature (WBGT) index, and an overview of other heat stress indices may be undertaken. These principles and methods are combined to illustrate how one may evaluate the risk of heat illness. Three general areas of research are briefly reviewed: climate change, clothing effects, and physiological parameters. These topics are compared with the published researches from other countries. Over the years in Iran, too much emphasis has been placed on the academic accuracy of an index at the expense of practicability. In addition, the studies in Iran showed few detailed researches with a target of preventive measures and intervention to mitigate adverse effects and there is no strong focus on sustainable development.
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