Publications by authors named "Jesper Medom Vestergaard"

17 Publications

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How does engagement in society in adolescence affect educational attainment and employment in early adulthood: A prospective cohort study.

PLoS One 2021 1;16(4):e0249312. Epub 2021 Apr 1.

Department of Occupational Medicine, Danish Ramazzini Centre, University Research Clinic, Regional Hospital West Jutland, Herning, Denmark.

Introduction: Educational attainment and employment are essential for young people to develop the skills needed to participate in society and maintain a stable connection to the labour market in adult life. The objective of this study was to examine associations between engagement in society, measured by leisure time activities and part-time work in mid and late adolescence and educational attainment and employment in early adulthood.

Method: A cohort of Danish young people born in 1989 was followed in a prospective study with questionnaires in 2004 (n = 3,054) and 2007 (n = 2,400) where information on leisure time activities and part-time work was collected. Information on connection to education and work was collected from a register of social benefits when participants were 25-29 years old and divided into high and low connection. The associations were examined using logistic regression and stratified by gender and childhood socioeconomic groups.

Results: Part-time work was, both in mid (OR: 1.7 [95% CI 1.3; 2.2]) and late (1.9 [1.4;2.6]) adolescence, positively associated with connection to education and work. Leisure time activities in mid adolescence were associated with connection to education and work (OR:1.6 [1.2;2.1]). Among men engagement in society showed strongest associations with later connection to education or work in mid adolescence (ORs up to 2.2), whereas the associations for women seemed strongest in late adolescence (ORs up to 2.8).

Conclusion: The study showed that adolescent engagement in society had positive associations with later educational attainment and employment, with stronger impact of part-time work compared to leisure time activities. The study identified differences between genders and the timing of engagement. Associations were consistent across socioeconomic groups.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0249312PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8016247PMC
April 2021

Mental disorders following electrical injuries-A register-based, matched cohort study.

PLoS One 2021 22;16(2):e0247317. Epub 2021 Feb 22.

Department of Occupational Medicine-University Research Clinic, Danish Ramazzini Centre, Regional Hospital West Jutland, Herning, Denmark.

Introduction: Electrical injuries happen every day in homes and workplaces. Not only may these injuries cause physical damage and disability, they may also cause mental disorders. The aim of this study was to investigate if persons with an electrical injury suffer from mental disorders in the following years.

Material And Methods: In a prospective matched cohort design, we identified 14.112 electrical injuries in two Danish registries and matched these with persons with dislocation/sprain injuries or eye injuries, respectively, as well as with persons from the workforce from the same occupation, using year of injury, sex and age as matching variables. We identified possible outcomes in terms of mental diagnoses in the Danish National Patient registry, based on literature, including reviews, original studies and case-reports as well as experiences from clinical praxis. The associations were analyzed using conditional cox- and logistic regression.

Results: We found that the following of the examined outcomes were associated with exposure to an electrical injury compared to the matched controls. Some of the outcomes showed the strongest associations shortly after the injury, namely 'mental disorders due to known physiological condition', 'anxiety and adjustment disorders', and especially the 'Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)' subgroup. The same pattern was seen for 'Depression' although the associations were weaker. Other conditions took time to develop ('Somatoform disorders'), or were only present in the time to event analysis ('other non-psychotic mental disorders' and 'sleep disorders'). The findings were consistent in all three matches, with the highest risk estimates in the occupation match.

Conclusion: Electrical injuries may result in mental disorders, both acute and several years after. However, the absolute risk is limited as most of the outcomes are rare.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0247317PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7899322PMC
February 2021

Occupational exposure to respirable crystalline silica and risk of autoimmune rheumatic diseases: a nationwide cohort study.

Int J Epidemiol 2021 Jan 18. Epub 2021 Jan 18.

Department of Occupational Medicine, Danish Ramazzini Centre, Aarhus University Hospital, Aarhus, Denmark.

Background: Exposure to respirable crystalline silica is suggested to increase the risk of autoimmune rheumatic diseases. We examined the association between respirable crystalline silica exposure and systemic sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus and small vessel vasculitis.

Methods: In a cohort study of the total Danish working population, we included 1 541 505 male and 1 470 769 female workers followed since entering the labour market 1979-2015. Each worker was annually assigned a level of respirable crystalline silica exposure estimated with a quantitative job exposure matrix. We identified cases of autoimmune rheumatic diseases in a national patient register and examined sex-specific exposure-response relations by cumulative exposure and other exposure metrics.

Results: We identified 4673 male and 12 268 female cases. Adjusted for age and calendar year, men exposed to high levels of respirable crystalline silica compared with non-exposed showed increased incidence rate ratio (IRR) for the four diseases combined of 1.53 [95% confidence interval (CI): 1.39-1.69], for systemic sclerosis of 1.62 (1.08-2.44) and rheumatoid arthritis of 1.57 (1.41-1.75). The overall risk increased with increasing cumulative exposure attained since entering the workforce [IRR: 1.07 (1.05-1.09) per 50 µg/m3-years]. Female workers were less exposed to respirable crystalline silica, but showed comparable risk patterns with overall increased risk with increasing cumulative exposure [IRR: 1.04 (0.99-1.10) per 50 µg/m3-years].

Conclusions: This study shows an exposure-dependent association between occupational exposure to respirable crystalline silica and autoimmune rheumatic diseases and thus suggests causal effects, most evident for systemic sclerosis and rheumatoid arthritis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ije/dyaa287DOI Listing
January 2021

Patient-Reported Outcome Measures Used in Routine Care Predict for Survival at Disease Progression in Patients With Advanced Lung Cancer.

Clin Lung Cancer 2021 Mar 15;22(2):e169-e179. Epub 2020 Oct 15.

Department of Oncology, Hospital Unit West Jutland, Herning, Denmark.

Background: Patient-reported outcome (PRO) measures have been increasingly implemented in routine care to aid in clinical decision-making. However, the prognostic value of PRO measures as a tool for decision making is not easily interpreted by clinicians. Our aims were to explore the prognostic value of PRO measures at disease progression and the changes in PRO measures between treatment start (baseline) and disease progression.

Patients And Methods: Since 2014, patients with lung cancer have completed an electronic version of the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer Quality of Life Questionnaires C30 and LC-13 before every outpatient visit at the Department of Oncology, Hospital Unit West, Jutland, Denmark. The patients' responses were used in routine care. Patients receiving palliative antineoplastic treatment were eligible for analysis if the questionnaire had been completed at the initiation of first-line treatment and at disease progression. The prognostic value of the scores was evaluated using a Cox proportional hazard model. A P value < .01 was considered statistically significant.

Results: A total of 94 screened patients were included. At disease progression, survival could be predicted from the absolute score of the global health scale, 3 functional scales (physical, role, emotional), and 7 symptom scales (fatigue, pain, dyspnea, hemoptysis, lung cancer dyspnea, chest pain). In addition, changes in hemoptysis, dysphagia, dyspnea, and chest pain predicted for survival at progression.

Conclusion: PRO measures used in routine care can provide clinicians with relevant prognostic information about patients with lung cancer at disease progression. These results show the potential value of PRO measures when used in clinical decision-making.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cllc.2020.09.014DOI Listing
March 2021

Contacts with general practitioner, sick leave and work participation after electrical injuries: a register-based, matched cohort study.

Occup Environ Med 2021 01 2;78(1):54-60. Epub 2020 Nov 2.

Department of Occupational Medicine, Danish Ramazzini Centre, Regional Hospital West Jutland, Herning, Denmark.

Objective: Exposure to electrical current may cause injury with both mental and physiological consequences. This may lead to increased contacts with general practitioners (GP) and the injured person may develop reduced ability to work. We aimed to examine these outcomes in terms of work-participation, long-term sick leave and contacts with GPs.

Methods: In a matched cohort design, we identified 14 112 electrical injuries in two registries and matched these with both patients with distorsion injuries or eye injuries, and with persons from the same occupation, using year of injury, sex and age for matching. We defined the outcomes based on register information regarding contacts with GPs and public transfer income. After the injury, we determined if the person had a long-term sick leave episode during the first 6, 12 months and 5 years. We calculated work participation during the year and 5 years and the number of GP contacts in the year of the injury, the year after and 5 years after the injury and dichotomised this at twice the mean number of contacts in the study population. The associations were analysed using conditional logistic regression.

Results: We found increased risk for all defined outcomes, with the highest estimates in the occupation match. The risk estimates were similar over time. Adjusting for previous work participation increased the estimates slightly, whereas adjusting for previous contacts with GPs reduced the estimates. Restricting to those with at longer hospitalisation increased the estimates.

Conclusion: Electrical injuries increase risk of long-term sick leave, low work participation and increased contacts with GPs.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/oemed-2020-106858DOI Listing
January 2021

Associations of Occupational Styrene Exposure With Risk of Encephalopathy and Unspecified Dementia: A Long-Term Follow-up Study of Workers in the Reinforced Plastics Industry.

Am J Epidemiol 2021 02;190(2):288-294

Exposure to industrial solvents has been associated with encephalopathy. Styrene is a neurotoxic industrial solvent, and we investigated the long-term risk of encephalopathy and unspecified dementia following styrene exposure. We followed 72,465 workers in the reinforced plastics industry in Denmark (1977-2011) and identified incident cases of encephalopathy (n = 228) and unspecified dementia (n = 565) in national registers. Individual styrene exposure levels were modeled from information on occupation, measurements of work place styrene levels, product, process, and years of employment. Adjusted analyses were performed using a discrete survival function. A positive trend for encephalopathy (P < 0.01) and a negative trend for unspecified dementia (P = 0.03) were seen with cumulative styrene exposure accrued during the recent period of up to 15 years. For unspecified dementia and the combination of unspecified dementia and encephalopathy, a positive trend was indicated when applying a 30-year exposure lag (P = 0.13 and P = 0.07). The risk patterns seen following recent exposure probably reflect diagnostic criteria for encephalopathy requiring recent industrial solvent exposure and referral bias rather than association with styrene exposure, while the increasing risk observed for unspecified dementia and the combination of encephalopathy and unspecified dementia following distant exposure indicates an increased risk of dementia following styrene exposure with a long latency period.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/aje/kwaa170DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7850053PMC
February 2021

A Quantitative General Population Job Exposure Matrix for Occupational Noise Exposure.

Ann Work Expo Health 2020 07;64(6):604-613

Department of Occupational Medicine, Danish Ramazzini Centre, Aarhus University Hospital, Palle Juul-Jensens Boulevard 99, Aarhus N, Denmark.

Occupational noise exposure is a known risk factor for hearing loss and also adverse cardiovascular effects have been suggested. A job exposure matrix (JEM) would enable studies of noise and health on a large scale. The objective of this study was to create a quantitative JEM for occupational noise exposure assessment of the general working population. Between 2001-2003 and 2009-2010, we recruited workers from companies within the 10 industries with the highest reporting of noise-induced hearing loss according to the Danish Working Environment Authority and in addition workers of financial services and children day care to optimize the range in exposure levels. We obtained 1343 personal occupational noise dosimeter measurements among 1140 workers representing 100 different jobs according to the Danish version of the International Standard Classification of Occupations 1988 (DISCO 88). Four experts used 35 of these jobs as benchmarks and rated noise levels for the remaining 337 jobs within DISCO 88. To estimate noise levels for all 372 jobs, we included expert ratings together with sex, age, occupational class, and calendar year as fixed effects, while job and worker were included as random effects in a linear mixed regression model. The fixed effects explained 40% of the total variance: 72% of the between-jobs variance, -6% of the between-workers variance and 4% of the within-worker variance. Modelled noise levels showed a monotonic increase with increasing expert score and a 20 dB difference between the highest and lowest exposed jobs. Based on the JEM estimates, metal wheel-grinders were among the highest and finance and sales professionals among the lowest exposed. This JEM of occupational noise exposure can be used to prioritize preventive efforts of occupational noise exposure and to provide quantitative estimates of contemporary exposure levels in epidemiological studies of health effects potentially associated with noise exposure.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/annweh/wxaa034DOI Listing
July 2020

Sociodemographic, personal, and disease-related determinants of referral to patient-reported outcome-based follow-up of remote outpatients: a prospective cohort study.

Qual Life Res 2020 May 3;29(5):1335-1347. Epub 2020 Jan 3.

AmbuFlex/WestChronic, Occupational Medicine, University Research Clinic, Aarhus University, Gl. Landevej 61, 7400, Herning, Denmark.

Purpose: We examined the association between sociodemographic, personal, and disease-related determinants and referral to a new model of health care that uses patient-reported outcomes (PRO) measures for remote outpatient follow-up (PRO-based follow-up).

Methods: We conducted a prospective cohort study among outpatients with epilepsy at the Department of Neurology at Aarhus University Hospital, Denmark. Included were all persons aged ≥ 15 years visiting the department for the first time during the period from May 2016 to May 2018. Patients received a questionnaire containing questions about health literacy, self-efficacy, patient activation, well-being, and general health. We also collected data regarding sociodemographic status, labour market affiliation, and co-morbidity from nationwide registers. Associations were analysed as time-to-event using the pseudo-value approach. Missing data were handled using multiple imputations.

Results: A total of 802 eligible patients were included in the register-based analyses and 411 patients (51%) responded to the questionnaire. The results based on data from registers indicated that patients were less likely to be referred to PRO-based follow-up if they lived alone, had low education or household income, received temporary or permanent social benefits, or if they had a psychiatric diagnosis. The results based on data from the questionnaire indicated that patients were less likely to be referred to PRO-based follow-up if they reported low levels of health literacy, self-efficacy, patient activation, well-being, or general health.

Conclusion: Both self-reported and register-based analyses indicated that socioeconomically advantaged patients were referred more often to PRO-based follow-up than socioeconomically disadvantaged patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11136-019-02407-2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7190685PMC
May 2020

A follow-up study of occupational styrene exposure and risk of autoimmune rheumatic diseases.

Occup Environ Med 2020 02 17;77(2):64-69. Epub 2019 Dec 17.

Department of Occupational Medicine, Danish Ramazzini Centre, Aarhus University Hospital, Aarhus, Denmark.

Objectives: Increased risk has been suggested for autoimmune rheumatic diseases following solvent exposure. The evidence for specific solvents is limited, and little is known about exposure-response relations. Styrene is an aromatic, organic solvent and the objective of this study was to analyse the association between occupational styrene exposure and autoimmune rheumatic diseases in men and women.

Methods: We followed 72 212 styrene-exposed workers of the Danish reinforced plastics industry from 1979 to 2012. We modelled full work history of styrene exposure from employment history, survey data and historical styrene exposure measurements. We identified cases in the national patient registry and investigated gender-specific exposure-response relations by cumulative styrene exposure for different exposure time windows adjusting for age, calendar year and educational level.

Results: During 1 515 126 person-years of follow-up, we identified 718 cases of an autoimmune rheumatic disease, of which 73% were rheumatoid arthritis. When adjusting for potential confounders and comparing the highest with the lowest styrene exposure tertile, we observed a statistically non-significantly increased risk of systemic sclerosis among women (incidence rate ratio (IRR)=2.50; 95% CI 0.50 to 12.50) and men (IRR=1.86; 95 % CI 0.50 to 7.00), based on 9 and 22 cases, respectively. Results were inconsistent for the other autoimmune rheumatic diseases examined.

Conclusion: This study suggests an association between occupational styrene exposure and systemic sclerosis in men as well as in women but based on few cases. This is a new finding and has to be replicated before conclusions can be drawn.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/oemed-2019-106018DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7029229PMC
February 2020

Light Exposure during Days with Night, Outdoor, and Indoor Work.

Ann Work Expo Health 2019 07;63(6):651-665

Department of Occupational Medicine, Danish Ramazinni Centre, Aarhus University Hospital, Aarhus, Denmark.

Objective: To assess light exposure during days with indoor, outdoor, and night work and days off work.

Methods: Light intensity was continuously recorded for 7 days across the year among indoor (n = 170), outdoor (n = 151), and night workers (n = 188) in Denmark (55-56°N) equipped with a personal light recorder. White light intensity, duration above 80, 1000, and 2500 lux, and proportion of red, green, and blue light was depicted by time of the day and season for work days and days off work.

Results: Indoor workers' average light exposure only intermittently exceeded 1000 lux during daytime working hours in summer and never in winter. During daytime working hours, most outdoor workers exceeded 2500 lux in summer and 1000 lux in winter. Night workers spent on average 10-50 min >80 lux when working night shifts. During days off work, indoor and night workers were exposed to higher light intensities than during work days and few differences were seen between indoor, outdoor, and night workers. The spectral composition of light was similar for indoor, outdoor, and night workers during days at and off work.

Conclusion: The night workers of this study were during night hours on average exposed for a limited time to light intensities expected to suppress melatonin. The indoor workers were exposed to light levels during daylight hours that may reduce general well-being and mood, especially in winter. Outdoor workers were during summer daylight hours exposed to light levels comparable to those used for the treatment of depression.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/annweh/wxy110DOI Listing
July 2019

Sinonasal adenocarcinoma following styrene exposure in the reinforced plastics industry.

Occup Environ Med 2018 06 14;75(6):412-414. Epub 2018 Mar 14.

Department of Occupational Medicine, Danish Ramazzini Centre, Aarhus University Hospital, Aarhus, Denmark.

Background: Sinonasal adenocarcinoma is a rare disease expected to have rare causes and potential for strong risk factors as reflected by the strong association with occupational wood dust exposure. High level styrene exposure is a rare and suspected carcinogen, and this study examines the exposure-response relation between occupational styrene exposure, sinonasal adenocarcinoma and other subtypes.

Methods: We followed 73 092 styrene-exposed workers from 1968 to 2011 and identified sinonasal cancers in the Danish Cancer Registry. We modelled cumulative styrene exposure and estimated incidence rates and age, sex and wood-industry adjusted ORs.

Results: During 1 585 772 person-years, we observed nine cases of adenocarcinoma, corresponding to a fivefold non-significantly increased OR for estimates of high versus low cumulative styrene exposure (OR 5.11, 95% CI 0.58 to 45.12). The increased risk was confined to exposure received during the recent 15 years. The other histological subtypes showed no increased risk.

Conclusion: This study suggests increased risk of sinonasal adenocarcinoma following styrene exposure. The observations are, however, few, confounding from wood dust exposure cannot be ruled out, and additional studies are needed before firm conclusions can be drawn.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/oemed-2017-104974DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5969366PMC
June 2018

Styrene Exposure and Risk of Lymphohematopoietic Malignancies in 73,036 Reinforced Plastics Workers.

Epidemiology 2018 05;29(3):342-351

Background: Styrene is an important industrial chemical that the general population is exposed to at low levels. Previous research has suggested increased occurrence of leukemia and lymphoma among reinforced plastics workers exposed at high levels of styrene.

Methods: We followed 73,036 workers of 456 small- and medium-sized Danish reinforced plastics companies from 1968 to 2011 and investigated the exposure-response relation between cumulative styrene exposure and incidence of lymphohematopoietic malignancies. We modeled styrene exposure from employment history, survey data, and historical styrene exposure measurements. We retrieved information on lymphohematopoietic malignancies from national cancer and patient registers.

Results: We identified 665 cases overall of 21 different lymphohematopoietic malignancies or combinations thereof, each with at least 20 cases, during 1,581,976 person-years of follow-up. Initial analyses suggested higher age, sex, and calendar year-adjusted incidence rate ratios (RRs) for acute myeloid leukemia, Hodgkin lymphoma, and T-cell lymphoma with higher estimates of cumulative styrene exposure. Accounting for time since exposure showed a trend by cumulative styrene exposure (P = 0.01) and a doubled risk (RR = 2.4; 95% CI, 1.2, 4.6) of acute myeloid leukemia following estimated high compared with estimated low cumulative exposure during the prior 15-29 years. We observed no increased risk following exposure during more recent years and less consistent risk patterns for Hodgkin lymphoma and T-cell lymphoma.

Conclusions: This study, to our knowledge the largest epidemiologic study to date of occupational styrene exposure, suggests increased risk of acute myeloid leukemia following high styrene exposure with a latency period of about 15 years.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/EDE.0000000000000819DOI Listing
May 2018

The scapular dyskinesis test: Reliability, agreement, and predictive value in patients with subacromial impingement syndrome.

J Hand Ther 2017 Apr - Jun;30(2):208-213. Epub 2017 May 29.

Department of Public Health, Section of Clinical Social Medicine and Rehabilitation, Aarhus University, Aarhus, Denmark; DEFACTUM, Central Denmark Region, Aarhus, Denmark.

Study Design: Prospective cohort.

Introduction: Assessment of scapular dysfunction is considered important in the clinical evaluation and treatment of patients with symptoms of subacromial impingement. However, sparse research has been conducted into the reliability and predictive value of clinical tests with which to identify scapular dyskinesis.

Purpose Of The Study: To evaluate intrarater and interrater reliability and predictive value of the Scapular Dyskinesis Test (SDT) in patients with subacromial impingement syndrome.

Methods: Forty-five patients with subacromial impingement syndrome were included. The presence of scapular dyskinesis was classified by 2 raters using the SDT. Intrarater and interrater reliabilities were examined and compared. Patients with and without scapular dyskinesis were compared in terms of Oxford Shoulder Score and EQ-5D-5L scores at baseline and 3 months, as well rating of overall improvement in shoulder condition.

Results: SDT could not be performed in 5 patients, leaving 40 patients for further analysis. Kappa with squared weights was 0.64 for rater A and 0.86 for rater B; the intrarater agreement was 88% for A and 96% for B. For interrater comparison, the Kappa value was 0.59 and agreement 86%. No statically significant differences in Oxford Shoulder Score and EQ-5D-5L baseline and change scores or overall improvement in shoulder condition at 3 months were observed between patients with or without scapular dyskinesis.

Conclusions: Intrarater and interrater reliability and agreement of the SDT were determined. The findings that functional impairment and outcomes did not differ between patients with or without the presences of scapular dyskinesis may question the clinical value of the SDT in patients with subacromial impingement syndrome.

Level Of Evidence: 1b.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jht.2017.04.002DOI Listing
April 2018

Occupational noise exposure, psychosocial working conditions and the risk of tinnitus.

Int Arch Occup Environ Health 2017 Feb 16;90(2):217-225. Epub 2016 Dec 16.

Department of Occupational Medicine, Danish Ramazzini Centre, Aarhus University Hospital, Nørrebrogade 44 Building 2C, 8000, Åarhus C, Denmark.

Purpose: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the influence of occupational noise (current and cumulative doses) and psychosocial work factors (psychological demands and decision latitude) on tinnitus occurrence among workers, using objective and non-self-reported exposure measures to prevent reporting bias.

Methods: In a cross-sectional study, we analyzed data from a Danish survey from 2009 to 2010 that included 534 workers from children day care units and 10 manufacturing trades. Associations between risk factors (current noise exposure, cumulative noise exposure and psychosocial working conditions) and tinnitus were analyzed with logistic regression.

Results: We found no statistically significant associations between either current [OR 0.95 (95% CI 0.89; 1.01)] or cumulative [OR 0.93 (95% CI 0.81; 1.06)] occupational noise exposure and tinnitus. Likewise, results for psychosocial working conditions showed no statistically significant association between work place decision latitude [OR 1.06 (95% CI 0.94; 1.13)] or psychological demands [OR 1.07 (95% CI 0.90; 1.26)] and tinnitus.

Conclusions: Our results suggest that current Danish occupational noise levels (in combination with relevant noise protection) are not associated with tinnitus. Also, results indicated that the psychosocial working conditions we observed in this cohort of mainly industrial workers were not associated with tinnitus. Therefore, psychosocial working conditions comparable to those observed in this study are probably not relevant to take into account in the evaluation of workers presenting with tinnitus.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00420-016-1189-4DOI Listing
February 2017

Risk of hypersensitivity pneumonitis and interstitial lung diseases among pigeon breeders.

Eur Respir J 2016 09 26;48(3):818-25. Epub 2016 May 26.

Department of Occupational Medicine, Danish Ramazzini Centre, Aarhus University Hospital, Aarhus, Denmark.

We studied the risk of hypersensitivity pneumonitis and other interstitial lung diseases (ILDs) among pigeon breeders.This is a retrospective follow-up study from 1980 to 2013 of 6920 pigeon breeders identified in the records of the Danish Racing Pigeon Association. They were compared with 276 800 individually matched referents randomly drawn from the Danish population. Hospital based diagnoses of hypersensitivity pneumonitis and other ILDs were identified in the National Patient Registry 1977-2013. Stratified Cox regression analyses estimated the hazard ratios (HR) of hypersensitivity pneumonitis and other ILDs adjusted for occupation, residence and redeemed prescription of medication with ILDs as a possible side-effect. Subjects were censored at death, emigration or a diagnosis of connective tissue disease.The overall incidence rate of ILD was 77.4 per 100 000 person-years among the pigeon breeders and 50.0 among the referents. This difference corresponded to an adjusted HR of 1.56 (95% CI 1.26-1.94). The adjusted HRs of hypersensitivity pneumonitis and other ILDs for pigeon breeders were 14.36 (95% CI 8.10-25.44) and 1.33 (95% CI 1.05-1.69), respectively.This study shows an increased risk of ILD among pigeon breeders compared with the referent population. Protective measures are recommended even though ILD leading to hospital contact remains rare among pigeon breeders.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1183/13993003.00376-2016DOI Listing
September 2016

Atherogenic risk factors and hearing thresholds.

Audiol Neurootol 2014 9;19(5):310-8. Epub 2014 Oct 9.

Department of Occupational Medicine, Danish Ramazzini Centre, Aarhus University Hospital, Aarhus, Denmark.

The objective of this study was to evaluate the influence of atherogenic risk factors on hearing thresholds. In a cross-sectional study we analyzed data from a Danish survey in 2009-2010 on physical and psychological working conditions. The study included 576 white- and blue-collar workers from children's day care units, financial services and 10 manufacturing trades. Associations between atherogenic risk factors (blood lipids, glycosylated hemoglobin, smoking habits, body mass index (BMI), and ambulatory blood pressure) and hearing thresholds were analyzed using multiple linear regression models. Adjusted results suggested associations between smoking, high BMI and triglyceride level and low high-density lipoprotein level and increased low-frequency hearing thresholds (average of pure-tone hearing thresholds at 0.25, 0.5 and 1 kHz). Furthermore, an increasing load of atherogenic risk factors seemed associated with increased low-frequency hearing thresholds, but only at a borderline level of statistical significance. Associations were generally strongest with hearing levels of the worst hearing ear. We found no statistically significant associations between atherogenic risk factors and high-frequency hearing thresholds (average of pure-tone hearing thresholds at 4, 6 and 8 kHz).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000365439DOI Listing
July 2015

Recent and long-term occupational noise exposure and salivary cortisol level.

Psychoneuroendocrinology 2014 Jan 9;39:21-32. Epub 2013 Oct 9.

Department of Occupational Medicine, Danish Ramazzini Centre, Aarhus University Hospital, 8000 Aarhus C, Denmark.

Environmental and occupational noise exposure have been related to increased risk of cardiovascular disease, hypothetically mediated by stress-activation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis. The objective of this study was to investigate the relation between recent and long-term occupational noise exposure and cortisol level measured off work to assess a possible sustained HPA-axis effect. We included 501 industrial, finance, and service workers who were followed for 24h during work, leisure, and sleep. Ambient occupational noise exposure levels were recorded every 5s by personal dosimeters and we calculated the full-shift LAEq value and estimated duration and cumulative exposure based on their work histories since 1980. For 332 workers who kept a log-book on the use of hearing protection devices (HPD), we subtracted 10 dB from every noise recording obtained during HPD use and estimated the noise level at the ear. Salivary cortisol concentration was measured at 20.00 h, the following day at awakening, and 30 min after awakening on average 5, 14 and 14.5h after finishing work. The mean ambient noise exposure level was 79.9 dB(A) [range: 55.0-98.9] and the mean estimated level at the ear 77.7 dB(A) [range: 55.0-94.2]. In linear and mixed regression models that adjusted for age, sex, current smoking, heavy alcohol consumption, personal income, BMI, leisure-time noise exposure level, time since occupational noise exposure ceased, awakening time, and time of saliva sampling, we observed no statistically significant exposure response relation between recent, or long-term ambient occupational noise exposure level and any cortisol parameter off work. This was neither the case for recent noise level at the ear. To conclude, neither recent nor long-term occupational noise exposure levels were associated with increased cortisol level off work. Thus, our results do not indicate that a sustained activation of the HPA axis, as measured by cortisol, is involved in the causal pathway between occupational noise exposure and cardiovascular disease.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.psyneuen.2013.09.028DOI Listing
January 2014