Regional and age differences in the reliability and factor structure of the SDS among elderly (65-84 years) men who were living either in eastern or in southwestern Finland were investigated. The Cronbach alpha coefficient was .803 for the eastern and .809 for the southwestern cohort; these figures were reasonably high. The tendency found was for the coefficient to be somewhat higher for the old (75-84 years) than for the young-old (65-74 years) population. In investigating the factor structure, a principal components factor analysis was performed, and the remaining factors were rotated using the orthogonal Varimax rotation algorithm. Three factors emerged for young-old men in the East, for young-old men in the Southwest and for old men in the Southwest, and four factors for old men in the East. The factor patterns of the first two factors showed similarities in both regions, but their order was different. "Loss of self-esteem" accounted for more of the common variance in the East and "agitated mood" in the Southwest. The differences in the third factor between the two regions were evident.
The association between alcohol consumption and 10-year mortality by death cause was studied in 1112 men aged 55-74 years and living either in eastern or south-western Finland. After adjustment for age, blood pressure, smoking, serum cholesterol, and other variables, the relative odds ratio of 10-year total mortality associated with consuming 1-273 g of absolute alcohol per month was 0.9 (95% confidence interval of 0.6-1.2) and with consuming more than 273 g per month due to violence was small, 15, but relative odds of violent death associated with consuming 1-273 and 274 or more grams of alcohol per month were 3.4 and 16.2, respectively (95% confidence intervals of 0.4-31.9 and 1.9-141.2).
The aims were (1) to compare all cause mortality in population samples of different cultures; and (2) to cross predict fatal event by risk functions involving risk factors usually measured in cardiovascular epidemiology.
The study was a 25 year prospective cohort study. The prediction of all cause mortality was made using the multiple logistic equation as a function of 12 risk factors; the prediction of months lived after entry examination was made by the multiple linear regression using the same factors. POPULATION SAMPLES: There were five cohorts of men aged 40-59 years, from Finland (two cohorts, 1677 men), from The Netherlands (one cohort, 878 men), and from Italy (two cohorts, 1712 men).
The Finnish cohorts came from geographically defined rural areas, the Dutch cohort from a small town in central Holland, and the Italian cohorts from rural villages in northern and central Italy.
All cause mortality was highest in Finland (557 per 1000), and lower in The Netherlands (477) and in Italy (475). The solutions of the multiple logistic function showed the significant and almost universal predictive role of certain factors, with rare exceptions. These were age, blood pressure, cigarette smoking, and arm circumference (the latter with a negative relationship). Similar results were obtained when solving a multiple linear regression equation predicting the number of months lived after entry examination as a function of the same factors. The prediction of fatal events in each country, using the risk functions of the others, produced limited errors, the smallest one being -2% and the largest +11%. When solving the logistic model in the pool of all the cohorts with the addition of dummy variables for the identification of nationality, it also appeared that only a small part of the mortality differences between countries is not explained by 12 available risk factors.
A small set of risk factors seems to explain the intercohort differences of 25 year all cause mortality in population samples of three rather different cultures.
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The association of physical activity with coronary risk factors and self-reported physical ability was studied in a cohort of 331 healthy Finnish men aged 45-64 years at entry, representing the survivors of a 20-year longitudinal study from 1964 to 1984. Baseline physical activity was not significantly related to levels of coronary risk factors at subsequent 5-year, 10-year or 20-year follow-up examinations. The 72 who increased their physical activity during the study period smoked less at 20-year follow-up than those who remained sedentary (p = 0.03). No other significant associations between 20-year changes of physical activity and coronary risk factors were seen. Although baseline physical activity was not, physical activity and exercise at 20-year follow-up were positively related to indices of functional capacity assessed at the end of the study period, when the subjects had reached a mean age of 73 years. It is concluded from this long-term study that a relative increase of physical activity between middle and old age is associated with both less smoking and a maintained high level of physical ability.
Drinking patterns and changes in alcohol consumption from 1974 to 1984 and associations between alcohol consumption in 1974 and ten-year mortality rates from cardiovascular, violent, cancer or all causes were studied among Finnish men born between 1900 and 1919. The overall absolute alcohol consumption was low in both 1974 and 1984. The average alcohol consumption and drinking pattern did not significantly change with increasing age, though some individual changes occured. Moderate or heavier alcohol consumption was a significant risk factor for cancer deaths among non-smoking men, but not in male smokers. Moderate or heavier alcohol consumption might also be a significant risk factor in violent death. Low, moderate or heavier alcohol consumption was not a significant risk factor for coronary deaths among the men in this rural Finnish population.
Drinking patterns, changes in alcohol consumption from 1974 to 1984 and socioeconomic, social, health and health-related variables associated with changes were studied in a male cohort born 1900-1919 and living either in eastern or in southwestern Finland. The average alcohol consumption and drinking pattern did not change to any significant extent among these Finnish men with increasing age, though some individual changes happened. Most aging or aged Finnish men did not react to social stressors or worsening of health by changing alcohol consumption.
The association of past changes in serum cholesterol level with cause-specific mortality between 1974 and 1989 was examined in a cohort of 784 Finnish men aged 55-74 years who were free of symptomatic coronary heart disease in 1974. Changes in serum cholesterol level were computed based on measurements made in 1959, 1964, 1969, and 1974. Of the 405 deaths, 202 were due to cardiovascular diseases and 107 due to cancer. Men with a decline in serum cholesterol level between 1959 and 1974 also experienced greater than average declines in body mass index and tended to be more often current smokers in 1974. Among 339 men aged 65-74 years in 1974, men in the lowest tertile of serum cholesterol change, i.e., with greatest declines, had increased cardiovascular (hazard ratio, 1.58; 95% confidence interval 1.00-2.50) and all-cause (hazard ratio, 1.46; 95% confidence interval 1.06-2.02) mortality compared with men in the middle tertile of change, i.e., with least change, in multivariate analysis. Among 445 men aged 55-64 years in 1974, there was a significant U-shaped association between change in serum cholesterol level and coronary and all-cause mortality risk. The authors suggest that both the decline in serum cholesterol level and the associated high mortality may be caused by a third factor, such as increased prevalence of chronic diseases or other changes associated with aging. This would help to explain why several studies have not found an association of serum cholesterol with coronary risk among the elderly.
Classification of electrocardiographic S-T segment changes in epidemiological studies of coronary heart disease. Preliminary evaluation of a new, modified classification, with particular reference to the prognostic significance of different types of S-T segment changes.