[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background:
Previous studies of professional fishing activities have indicated that vessel movements correlate to fishermen's energy expenditure. We have previously demonstrated that even in calm weather, the heel and pitch significantly increase the fishermen's energy expenditure, ignoring the activities carried out on board. This continuation of the study goes further by exploring the relation between the exposure to the ship's movements and the fishermen's energy expenditure during various physical activities on board.
Materials and methods:
Four fishermen on 2 contemporary steel trawlers recorded their work activities on an hourly basis during a 4 days fishing voyage. The energy expenditure was estimated with a body monitoring system (SenseWear Pro 3) carried as an armband, placed on the right upper arm. The vessels' movements were assessed by a gyroscope placed in the wheelhouse. The additional energy expenditure relative to the energy expenditure during sleep was recorded during activities such as navigation, fishing, and machine handling and was correlated to the vessels' recorded movements (pitch/roll). Data were analysed by linear regression.
Roll and pitch were less than 10o for both vessels during the voyages. The fishermen's energy expenditure differed with the tasks undertaken and correlated with the vessels' movements, but for navigation and fishing the correlation was only significant in the highest - fourth quartile of - pitch/roll.
This study has demonstrated that vessel's movements in calm weather increase the energy expenditure during navigation, fishing, and machine handling and that the relation differs in between these activities on board and rest.
Full-text · Article · Dec 2015 · International maritime health
[Show description][Hide description] DESCRIPTION: Abstract
Aim: We have analysed the effect of co-cancer morbidity on the mortality in subjects with malignant mesothelioma(MM) in the Danish Cancer Registry (DCR).
Methods:The DCR has data on cancer diagnosis in Denmark. Cancers are classified according to the international Classification of Diseases ICD-0 for the period 1943 – 1977 and ICD-10 for the period 1978 – to now. DCR has been found to be 95%-98% complete and valid. We identified patients with MM, the disease localisation and previous cancer in MM patients. Civil Registration System (CRS) provided information on date of birth, sex, marital status and date of death. Person-years at risk were computed from the date of diagnosis until the date of death, emigration or the 28th of January 2013, wichever came first. Study outcome was time to death.
Results: We identified 3638 patients with MM in pleura or peritoneum diagnosed between 1943 and 2011. Of these, 267 patients were previously diagnosed with cancer. For these 267 patients there was no association between the localization of MM and that of previous cancer. Previous cancer was associated with an increased mortality in MM patients with a MRR of 1.15 (95% confidence interval (CI): 1.01 - 1.31). Median survival in MM patients with previous cancer was 0.38 years (95% CI: 0.30 – 0.54 years) compared to a median survival of 0.50 years (95% CI: 0.46 – 0.53 years) in patients without previous cancer. Colon cancer N = 13 (MRR: 2.13 (95% CI: 1.23 - 3.68)), N = 4 lung cancer (MRR: 3.42 (95% CI: 1.28 - 9.13)) and leukemia N = 15 (MRR: 1.78 (95% CI: 1.05 - 3.01)) were associated with increased mortality.
Conclusion: Co-cancer morbidity in patients with MM reduces the median survival.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Reduced asthma and allergy risks in farmers have been ascribed to microbial exposures. However, selection may also play a role and this was assessed in two Scandinavian farming populations.
Asthma prevalence in 739 Danish farming students was compared to that of 1,105 siblings. 8,482 Norwegian farmers were also compared with 349 early retired farmers.
The prevalence of ever-asthma was 5.4% in farming students and 5.2% in siblings (OR 1.1; 95%CI 0.73-1.7). Current asthma in farmers was 3.0% compared to 6.3% in farmers who had retired early (OR 1.8, 95%CI 1.1-2.9). Adjustments for early retirement increased the asthma prevalence by 0.3-0.6%. Farmers who had changed production were more likely to have asthma (OR 9.8, 95% CI 6.0-16).
No healthy worker selection into farming was observed and changes in asthma prevalence due to early retirement were small. Selection effects are therefore unlikely to explain the protective effects of farming on asthma.
Full-text · Article · Sep 2015 · Annals of agricultural and environmental medicine: AAEM
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Longitudinal studies on the effect of farming on lung function in young participants are few. Our objective was to explore if exposure to farming impaired lung function in young adults.
We studied 1964 farming students and 407 controls in 1992/2004, and carried out follow-up in 2007/2008. Spirometry, skin prick test and bronchial hyper-responsiveness (BHR) were assessed, height and weight measured, and questionnaires covering health and occupation were collected. Cumulative dust and endotoxin exposures were estimated from modelled personal dust measurements. Lung function effect was expressed as change in z-score during follow-up using the Global Lung Initiative 2012 project prediction equations. Longitudinal data were available for 1134 young participants ≤25 years at baseline.
We found no differences in lung function Δz-scores between farmers and controls, however, adjusted multivariable linear regression showed a negative effect among current farmers on ΔzFEV1 (forced expiratory volume in 1 s; -0.12, p=0.006) and ΔzFEV1/FVC (forced vital capacity; -0.15, p=0.009) compared to ex-farmers. An interaction was found between sex and farming, showing that current farming suppresses ΔzFEV1 and ΔzFVC more among females. Smoking in farmers had a deleterious effect on ΔzFEV1, which was not seen in controls, though no significant interaction was found. Farm upbringing protected against impairment of lung function, and BHR at baseline had a deleterious effect on ΔzFEV1 only in those not raised on a farm.
We conclude that being a current farmer is associated with a negative effect on lung function, when compared to ex-farmers, with females being more susceptible. Being raised on a farm protects against the adverse effect of BHR on change in lung function.
Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to http://group.bmj.com/group/rights-licensing/permissions.
No preview · Article · Aug 2015 · Occupational and environmental medicine
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The reported prevalence of allergic sensitization among children is lower in rural areas than in urban areas of the world. The aim was to investigate the urban-rural differences of allergic sensitization to inhalant allergens in adults depending on childhood exposure living in an industrialized country as Denmark.
A total of 1236 male participants of 30-40 years of age recruited from two epidemiological studies were divided into four groups with regard to place of upbringing; city, town, rural area, and farm. Allergic sensitization was assessed by skin prick tests (SPTs) to 10 inhalant allergens and measurements of serum specific IgE (sIgE) to four inhalant allergens (grass, birch, cat, and house dust mite).
The prevalence of allergic sensitization to inhalant allergens decreased with decreasing degree of urbanized childhood. The risk of being sensitized to one or more allergens also decreased with decreasing degree of urbanized upbringing measured by sIgE to 4 common allergens as odds ratio with 95% confidence intervals with city as reference; town 0.60 (0.39 - 0.92), rural area 0.34 (0.22 - 0.52) and farm 0.31 (0.21 - 0.46). Furthermore it was measured by SPT to 10 common allergens; town 0.52 (0.33 - 0.84), rural area 0.34 (0.21 - 0.53), farm 0.29 (0.19 - 0.45). This urban rural association was also seen for the risk of sensitization to specific allergens, rhinitis and allergic asthma.
This is the first study to show an urban rural gradient of overall allergic sensitization and specific allergen sensitization in adults depending on their childhood exposure. In this highly homogenous Western population exposure to a less urbanized childhood was associated with lower risk of allergic sensitization and disease as an adult. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
No preview · Article · Jun 2015 · Clinical & Experimental Allergy
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background
Skin prick tests (SPT) are widely used both in clinical diagnostics and in research. The standardization of allergen extracts is well documented to be crucial for the validity of SPT, whereas less emphasis has been placed on reproducibility and the SPT procedure itself. The objectives of this study are to clarify how the double skin prick test procedure influence the sensitivity and specificity of the test and to analyse the differences in weal size in skin prick tests between two batches of allergen extracts from the same vendor.
The association between rhinitis and SPT was assessed among 1135 persons from a general population sample. SPT was performed twice with 10 common aeroallergens. In a subsample of 90 persons SPT was performed simultaneously with five of the allergens using different batches.
Thirty percent had at least one positive SPT. Among asthmatics this number was 62%. Only minor differences were seen between the sizes of two weals from the same batch. A second SPT with the same batch did not change the association between rhinitis and sensitization. When performing SPT with two different batches disagreement was observed in 2% (Birch) to 11% (Cat) of the subjects.
Performing SPT twice with the same allergen batch does not enhance the validity of the test, and value of double testing can be questioned. Considerable differences in SPT response with different batches from the same manufacturer were observed. Thus inter batch differences in allergen extracts might be a source of variability.
No preview · Article · Apr 2015 · BMC Pulmonary Medicine
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Work intensification is a popular management strategy to increase productivity, but at the possible expense of employee mental stress. This study examines associations between ratings of work intensification and psychological distress, and the level of agreement between compared employee-rated and manager-rated work intensification. Multi-source survey data were collected from 3,064 employees and 573 company managers from the private sector in 2010. Multilevel regression models were used to compare different work intensification ratings across psychological distress strata. Distressed employees rated higher degree of total work intensification compared to non-distressed employees, and on three out of five sub ratings there were an increased prevalence of work intensification in the case group. In general, there was poor agreement between employee and company work intensification rating. Neither manager-rated work intensification nor employee/manager discrepancy in work intensification ratings was associated with psychological distress. Distressed employees had a higher total score of employee/manager agreed work intensification, and a higher prevalence of increased demands of labour productivity. This study demonstrates higher ratings of employee/manager agreed work intensification in distressed employees compared to non-distressed employees, challenging previous findings of reporting bias in distressed employees' assessment of work environment.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Occupational exposures have been shown to be risk factors for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) among never-smokers. In a Danish population-based cohort, we analysed this association and the population attributable fraction. The study population (N=1575) was aged 45-84, COPD was defined by lung function measurements and the method of lower limit of normal (LLN), and occupational exposure was assessed by questionnaire and expert judgement. Furthermore, the estimates additionally were provided according to the Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Diseases. More than a threefold increased risk (LLN OR=3.69 (95% CI 1.36 to 10.04) was found for occupational exposure to vapour, gas, dust and fumes (predominantly organic dust) in this never-smoking population, with a corresponding 48% (95% CI 30% to 65%) population attributable fraction among never-smokers.
Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to http://group.bmj.com/group/rights-licensing/permissions.
Full-text · Article · Jan 2015 · Occupational and Environmental Medicine
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Musculoskeletal pain from the upper extremity and shoulder region is commonly reported by computer users. However, the functional status of central pain mechanisms, i.e., central sensitization and conditioned pain modulation (CPM), has not been investigated in this population. The aim was to evaluate sensitization and CPM in computer users with and without chronic musculoskeletal pain.
Pressure pain threshold (PPT) mapping in the neck-shoulder (15 points) and the elbow (12 points) was assessed together with PPT measurement at mid-point in the tibialis anterior (TA) muscle among 47 computer users with chronic pain in the upper extremity and/or neck-shoulder pain (pain group) and 17 pain-free computer users (control group). Induced pain intensities and profiles over time were recorded using a 0 -10 cm electronic visual analogue scale (VAS) in response to different levels of pressure stimuli on the forearm with a new technique of dynamic pressure algometry. The efficiency of CPM was assessed using cuff-induced pain as conditioning pain stimulus and PPT at TA as test stimulus.
The demographics, job seniority and number of working hours/week using a computer were similar between groups. The PPTs measured at all 15 points in the neck-shoulder region were not significantly different between groups. There were no significant differences between groups neither in PPTs nor pain intensity induced by dynamic pressure algometry. No significant difference in PPT was observed in TA between groups. During CPM, a significant increase in PPT at TA was observed in both groups (P < 0.05) without significant differences between groups. For the chronic pain group, higher clinical pain intensity, lower PPT values from the neck-shoulder and higher pain intensity evoked by the roller were all correlated with less efficient descending pain modulation (P < 0.05).
This suggests that the excitability of the central pain system is normal in a large group of computer users with low pain intensity chronic upper extremity and/or neck-shoulder pain and that increased excitability of the pain system cannot explain the reported pain. However, computer users with higher pain intensity and lower PPTs were found to have decreased efficiency in descending pain modulation.
Full-text · Article · Dec 2014 · BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Abstract The aim was to explore the impact of occupation on chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) in a cross-sectional population-based study among subjects aged 45 to 84 years. In a stratified sampling 89 general practitioners practices (GPP) in Denmark recruited 3106 males and 1636 females through the Danish Civil Registration System. COPD was defined by spirometry by the 2.5(th)-centile Lower Limit of Normal of FEV1 and FEV1/FVC. Information about smoking, occupational exposure and the respective occupations were obtained from questionnaires. Occupations followed the Danish adaptation of The International Standard Classification of Occupations, revision 1988 (DISCO-88). Exposure to vapour, gas, dust (organic and inorganic), and fume (VGDF) in each occupation (yes/no) was evaluated by two independent specialist in occupational medicine. Exposures were divided in no, low, medium, and high exposure as 0, <5, 5-14, and ≥ 15 years in the job, respectively. Data was analysed by a mixed random effect logistic regression model. The age-standardised COPD study prevalence was 5.0%. Of 372 DISCO-88 codes 72 were identified with relevant exposure to VGDF. 46% of the participants reported at least one occupation with VGDF exposure. Adjusted for smoking, age, sex, and GPP a dose-dependent association of COPD was found among workers in jobs with high organic dust exposure, with OR 1.56 (95% CI 1.09-2.24). Restricted to agriculture the OR was 1.59 (95% CI: 1.08-2.33). No association was observed for workers in jobs with inorganic dust, fume/gas, or vapour exposures. In summary, occupational organic dust exposure was associated to the prevalence of COPD.
No preview · Article · Nov 2014 · COPD Journal of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Studies on determinants of dairy farmers' exposure to dust and endotoxin have been sparse and so far none has addressed the combined effect of tasks and farm characteristics.
To study whether and how work tasks and specific stable characteristics influence the level of dairy farmers' personal exposure to inhalable dust and endotoxin.
We applied an observational design involving full-shift repeated personal measurements of inhalable dust and endotoxin exposure among 77 subjects (owners and farm workers) from 26 dairy farms. Performed tasks were self-registered in activity diaries, and information on stable characteristics was collected through personal interviews and walk-through surveys. Associations between exposure, tasks, and stable characteristics were examined in linear mixed-effect models with individual and farm treated as random effects. Separate as well as combined models for tasks and stable characteristics were elaborated.
The 124 personal samples collected had a geometric mean level (geometric standard deviation) of 360 EU m(-3) (3.8) for endotoxin exposure and of 1.0mg m(-3) (2.7) for dust exposure. Identified factors that increased endotoxin exposure included a lower outdoor temperature and use of slope-based or back-flushed slurry systems along with milking, distribution of bedding, and handling of feed and seeds in barns. For dust, exposure was higher when fully automatic (robotic) milking was used and during re-penning of animals, handling of feed and seeds, handling of silos and when distributing bedding. Dust exposure increased also as a result of use of rail feed dispensers in a model without fully automatic milking.
The current exposure to dust and in particular endotoxin among Danish dairy farmers demand effective strategies to reduce their exposure. The present findings suggest that future interventions should focus on feeding and manure handling systems. Use of respirators during handling of feed and distribution of bedding should be advised until adequate risk management measures have been established. The expected increased use of fully automatic milking in the future might increase dust exposure of dairy farmers.