Problems in Tropical Public Health Among Workers at a Jute Mill Near Calcutta

IV. Hemoglobin Values and their Relation to the Intensity of Hookworm Infections in the Labor Force

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  • Department of Tropical Public Health, Harvard School of Public Health


A study of hemoglobin values and their relationship to hookworm infections was conducted among workers, supervisors and servants at the Ludlow Jute Company mill, Chengail, Howrah District, West Bengal. Although nearly 70 per cent of the mill workers were infected with hookworm, the infections were very light. Mean hemoglobin values for the mill workers ranged considerably below those of the supervisory group. Hookworm infection did not appear to influence significantly the hemoglobin values for male mill workers; among the females, however, hemoglobin values decreased with increased degrees of hookworm infection, compensation failing when infections exceeded 400 eggs per gram.

Hookworm infections did not appear to present a serious public health problem among the mill workers (except for the more heavily parasitized females). However, anemia, especially in the females would remain a serious problem even in the complete absence of hookworm infection.