Validation of a Questionnaire for Heat Strain Evaluation in Women Workers

Habiballah Dehghan, Ehsanollah Habibi, Peymaneh Habibi, Mohammad Reza Maracy

Abstract


Introduction: Physiological, anthropometrical and thermal perceptual are the most important factors affecting thermoregulation of men and women in workplaces. The purpose of this study was determining the validity of a questionnaire method for assessing women’s heat strain in workplaces.

Methods: This cross‑sectional study was carried out on 96 healthy women. Data were continuously collected over a period of 3 months (July-September) in 2012. Mean ± (SD) of age was found to be 31.5 ± 7.48 years, of height 1.61 ± 0.05 m, of weight 61.55 ± 10.35 kg, and of body mass index 23.52 ± 3.75 kg/m2 in different workplaces. Heart rate and oral temperature were measured by heart rate monitoring and a medical digital thermometer, respectively. Subjects completed a draft questionnaire about the effective factors in the onset of heat strain. After collecting the questionnaires, the data were analyzed by applying Cronbach’sa calculation, factor analysis method, Pearson correlation and receiver operator characteristic curves using the SPSS 18 software.

Results: The value for Cronbach’s a was found to be 0.68. The factor analysis method on items of draft questionnaire extracted three subscale (16 variables) which they explained 63.6% of the variance. According to the results of receiver operator characteristic curve analysis, the cut‑off questionnaire score for separating people with heat strain from people with no heat strain was obtained to be 17.

Conclusions: The results of this research indicated that this quantitative questionnaire has an acceptable reliability and validity, and a cut‑off point. Therefore it could be used in the preliminary screening of heat strain in women in warm workplaces, when other heat stress evaluation methods are not available.

Keywords: Heat strain, questionnaire, women

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