The aims of this study were to estimate the prevalence and severity of MSCs in the adult general population of Northern Norway, and to study associations between MSCs and various demographic and lifestyle variables.
Data from the Tromsø 6 survey (2007-2008) of the population-based Tromsø Study were used (12,984 participants, 65.7% participation rate). We included 8,439 participants aged 30-79 years in the analyses. Associations between demographic and lifestyle variables and chronic MSCs (i.e., those lasting for at least 3 consecutive months, hereafter referred to as simply MSCs) was examined using logistic regression analysis.
The total age-adjusted prevalence of both mild and severe MSCs was 63.4% and 52.9% in women and men, respectively. In women, the age-adjusted prevalence was 44.0% and 19.4% for mild and severe MSCs, respectively; the corresponding values in men were 40.8% and 12.1%. The highest prevalence was found in the neck/shoulder region (34.2% and 8.9% for mild and severe MSCs, respectively). The prevalence of MSCs in =5 body regions was three times higher in women than in men (14.9% vs 5.6%). Current smoking was significantly associated with MSCs (odds ratio [OR]: 1.41, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.22-1.62), but showed a stronger effect in women (OR: 1.60, 95% CI: 1.30-1.96) than in men (OR: 1.25, 95% CI: 1.02-1.52). Self-perceived poor health was strongly associated with MSC (OR: 3.73, 95% CI: 3.27-4.24). Moderate vs low level of physical activity was associated with MSCs only in women (OR: 1.37, 95% CI: 1.12-1.67). Other demographic and lifestyle variables associated with MSCs were age (OR: 1.04, 95% CI: 1.01-1.06), body mass index (BMI) >30 kg/m2 (OR: 1.42, 95% CI: 1.23-1.66), low education level (OR: 1.78, 95% CI: 1.53-2.08) and former smoking (OR: 1.21, 95% CI: 1.09-1.35). Marital status, BMI
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The long-term consequences of chronic pain and/or stiffness from the musculoskeletal system (musculoskeletal complaints: MSCs) have not been well explored. The aims of this study were to investigate whether MSCs reported at baseline influence all-cause and cause-specific mortality during 21 years follow-up of a general Northern Norwegian adult population.
A total of 26,977 men and women aged 25-97 years who participated in the 1994-1995 survey of the Tromsø study (response rate 77%) were included in the present prospective cohort study. Baseline data were collected from the 1994-1995 survey and information on death and emigration was taken from the National Register of Norway. Cox regression analyses were performed to examine if MSCs predicted risk of mortality.
5693 (21.1%) participants died during follow-up. Mean time between entry into the survey and death or emigration was 18.6 years (standard deviation 4.87) for all-cause mortality. There was an increased risk of death among those with MSCs at baseline in the crude Cox regression model. However, the multivariable model revealed no significant association between MSCs at baseline and all-cause mortality by sex (women: hazard ratio [HR] = 0.93, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.85-1.01; men: HR = 0.93, 95%CI: 0.85-1.01). Furthermore, no significant associations were found between widespread MSCs at baseline and all-cause mortality in multivariable models (women: HR = 0.90, 95%CI: 0.80-1.01; men HR = 0.87, 95%CI: 0.76-1.00). Analyses on cause-specific mortality did not reveal any significant results.
MSCs are not independently associated with increased risk of death from cardiovascular disease, cancer, or death from all causes.
Female gender has been associated with musculoskeletal complaints (MSCs), but there are limited studies on how other factors may influence women and men differently. The aim of this prospective cohort study was to explore possible predictors of MSCs in women and men free of MSCs at baseline.
The present study included participants from the population-based Tromsø study, with baseline data from 1994-1995 and follow-up data from 2007-2008. MSCs were defined as having pain and/or stiffness in muscles and joints for 3 consecutive months during the past year. Predictors of MSCs were examined through binary logistic regression analyses and presented as odds ratios with 95% confidence intervals.
At baseline 4,496 participants reported no MSCs and among these 2,015 (44.8%) and 441 (9.8%) participants reported mild or severe MSCs, respectively, at follow-up. Female gender predicted MSCs in multivariable logistic regression analyses (odds ratio [OR] 1.46, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.29-1.66). Educational level of primary/secondary school (OR 1.73, 95% CI: 1.46-2.05) was the strongest predictor of MSCs, followed by poor self-perceived health (OR 1.62, 95% CI: 1.30-2.02). Other predictors were BMI =30 kg/m2 (OR 1.39, 95% CI: 1.10-1.77) and smoking (OR 1.33, 95% CI: 1.16-1.52). Age and physical activity level were not significantly associated with MSCs. Gender-stratified analyses revealed that mental health complaints (i.e., depression and/or anxiety) predicted MSCs in men (OR 2.03, 95% CI: 1.18-3.50), but not in women. Current smoking (OR 1.43, 95% CI: 1.16-1.76) and poor self-perceived health (OR 1.90, 95% CI: 1.34-2.71) showed slightly higher odds ratios among women than men, but the gender differences were not significant.
The present study demonstrates that several negative health determinants are predicting subsequent MSCs. However, the examined risk factors could not explain the higher prevalence of MSCs in women.