BACKGROUND: Waste is a composite mixture of different substances including endotoxins, organic dust and bio-aerosol stuffed with micro-organisms, and various toxic organic and inorganic chemicals, which may be intrinsically hazardous to human health. Therefore, health risks may derive from direct or indirect contact with garbage. EVIDENCE ACQUISITION: We searched for English-language literature describing the relationships between garbage and skin diseases in order to provide a state-of-the-art review on what is currently known about waste exposure effects on skin health. EVIDENCE SYNTHESIS: Most of the data regarding the possible relationship between garbage exposure and skin diseases are mainly gathered from studies conducted on subjects living near dumping sites and landfills as well as on workers engaged in solid waste collection, processing and/or disposal. Literature data are controversial since some studies did not show any significant association between cutaneous diseases and garbage whereas other authors reported significant connections with conditions such as skin infections, skin rashes and systemic lupus erythematosus. CONCLUSIONS: Despite deficiency in garbage collection and waste overproduction are becoming more and more common problems worldwide, to date only few surveys have been conducted to investigate on the relationship between garbage exposure and cutaneous diseases. Indubitably, more efforts and research are needed to elaborate this emerging issue and seek to drive authorities for the organization of controlled action and health risk reduction behaviors models to face possible waste related health risk.
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