We examined the relationship between psychological stress and the worsening of glycemic control in diabetic patients at the time of the Great East Japan Earthquake. HbA1c levels in diabetic patients before and after the disaster were evaluated with the General Health Questionnaire (GHQ) and other questions including those on changes in diet, exercise, psychological stress and drug intake in 320 consecutive diabetic patients who had been followed in a diabetes clinic. Logistic regression analysis revealed that the total GHQ scores (odds ratio [OR] 1.03 [95% confidence interval 1.01-1.06]; p<0.01) and interruption of drug intake (OR 4.48 [1.57-12.7]; p=0.01) were independently associated with worsening of glycemic control defined as an increase in the HbA1c level equal to or greater than 0.5%. Among the scores on the GHQ, those for somatic symptoms (OR 1.18 [1.01-1.38]; p=0.03) and sleep disturbances or anxiety (OR 1.26 [1.08-1.46]; p<0.01) were independently associated with glycemic control. These results suggest that psychological stress during a disaster has independent effects on worsening of glycemic control.
"Additionally, local clinicians also need to be aware that too much concern over a product transfer coefficient may indirectly and negatively affect the nutritional and life balance of an individual. In the near future, it is important to not only focus on reducing the risk of radiation exposure, but also to care for the other chronic illnesses the villagers may present including hypertension, hyperlipidemia, osteoporosis, and diabetes, as we reported[20-22], and is generally handled in other regions in Japan after the disaster[23,24]. The deterioration of chronic diseases might be associated with changes of life-style attempting to reduce radiation exposures. "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Resettlement to their radiation-contaminated hometown could be an option for people displaced at the time of a nuclear disaster; however, little information is available on the safety implications of these resettlement programs. Kawauchi village, located 12-30 km southwest of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, was one of the 11 municipalities where mandatory evacuation was ordered by the central government. This village was also the first municipality to organize the return of the villagers. To assess the validity of the Kawauchi villagers' resettlement program, the levels of internal Cesium (Cs) exposures were comparatively measured in returnees, commuters, and non-returnees among the Kawauchi villagers using a whole body counter. Of 149 individuals, 5 villagers had traceable levels of Cs exposure; the median detected level was 333 Bq/body (range, 309-1050 Bq/kg), and 5.3 Bq/kg (range, 5.1-18.2 Bq/kg). Median annual effective doses of villagers with traceable Cs were 1.1 x 10(-2) mSv/y (range, 1.0 x 10(-2)-4.1 x 10(-2) mSv/y). Although returnees had higher chances of consuming locally produced vegetables, Cochran-Mantel-Haenszel test showed that their level of internal radiation exposure was not significantly higher than that in the other 2 groups (p=0.643). The present findings in Kawauchi village imply that it is possible to maintain internal radiation exposure at very low levels even in a highly radiation-contaminated region at the time of a nuclear disaster. Moreover, the risks for internal radiation exposure could be limited with a strict food control intervention after resettlement to the radiation-contaminated village. It is crucial to establish an adequate number of radio-contaminated testing sites within the village, to provide immediate test result feedback to the villagers, and to provide education regarding the importance of re-testing in reducing the risk of high internal radiation exposure.
PLoS ONE 12/2013; 8(12):e81909. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0081909 · 3.23 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Japan has a long history of fighting against great earthquakes that cause structural damage/collapses, fires and/or tsunami. On March 11, 2011 at 14:46 (Friday), the Great East-Japan Earthquake (magnitude 9.0) attacked the Tohoku region (northeastern Japan), which includes Sendai City. The earthquake generated a devastating tsunami, leading to unprecedented disasters (~18,500 victims) in coastal areas of Iwate, Miyagi and Fukushima prefectures, despite the fact that people living in the Tohoku region are well trained for tsunami-evacuation procedures, with the mindset of "Tsunami, ten-den-ko." This code means that each person should evacuate individually upon an earthquake. Sharing this rule, children and parents can escape separately from schools, houses or workplaces, without worrying about each other. The concept of ten-den-ko (individual evacuation) is helpful for people living in coastal areas of earthquake-prone zones around the world. It is also important to construct safe evacuation centers, because the March 11(th) tsunami killed people who had evacuated to evacuation sites. We summarize the current conditions of people living in the disaster-stricken areas, including the consequences of the Fukushima nuclear accident. We also describe the disaster responses as the publisher of the Tohoku Journal of Experimental Medicine (TJEM), located in Sendai, with online support from Tokyo. In 1923, the Great Kanto Earthquake (magnitude 7.9) evoked a massive fire that destroyed large areas of Tokyo (~105,000 victims), including the print company for TJEM, but the Wistar Institute printed three TJEM issues in 1923 in Philadelphia. Mutual aid relationships should be established between distant cities to survive future disasters.
The Tohoku Journal of Experimental Medicine 04/2013; 229(4):287-99. DOI:10.1620/tjem.229.287 · 1.35 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: AIM: To investigate the effect of prolonged acute mental stress by means of a driving training on glucose control in patients with type 1 and type 2 diabetes mellitus.
METHODS: 39 patients with insulin-treated diabetes (18 type 1, 21 type 2 diabetes) were exposed to mental stress by means of a 2 h-driving training. The training session started 15 min after intake of a standard meal. Blood glucose, blood pressure, heart rate, salivary cortisol, and subjective stress perception were monitored in regular intervals and compared to a control day.
RESULTS: On the stress testing day, blood pressure rose from 142/86±16/9 mmHg to 162/95±22/11 mmHg (p<0.001), heart rate from 72±11 bpm to 86±16 bpm (p<0.001) and subjective stress perception from 1.4±0.6 to 4.7±2.5 points (p<0.001). Salivary cortisol concentrations increased from a median of 5.1 nmol/l (Interquartile Range (IQR) 3.5-7.5 nmol/l) at baseline to 7.7 nmol/l (IQR 4.7-12.8 nmol/l, p<0.001), all these measurements remained stable on the control day. Glucose control showed no significant difference on the stress testing day compared to the control day (mean difference over time=0.22 mmol/l, 95%-CI -1.5 to +1.9 mmol/l, p=0.794). A multivariate linear regression and correlation analysis showed no association of demographic characteristics (diabetes type, age, body mass index (BMI), diabetes duration, HbA1c), objective or subjective stress parameters with the course of glucose concentrations during the driving training.
CONCLUSIONS: Although a 2 h-driving training causes increased subjective and objective stress parameters, glucose control is maintained in patients with insulin-treated diabetes.
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