For several months, nurses completed ratings of the degree to which certain events relevant to absence were present during each of their scheduled workdays. The event ratings for days when the nurses decided to be absent were then compared with those for days when the nurses attended. As expected, certain events, such as ill health and tiredness, tended to covary and proved to be consistently related to absenteeism across nurses. Also as expected, some events that were not especially relevant for the nurses as a whole, like having a sick family member or friend and concerns about previous poor attendance, nonetheless emerged as being relevant to the absence behavior of certain individuals. Finally, some events were consistently related to the nurses' expressed desire to be absent but not to actual absences. We discuss these differences from two perspectives, one emphasizing the role of attribution bias and the other, a two-stage process in which such bias has no major role.
Air pollution data from 17 sampling stations between Windsor and Peterborough in Southern Ontario, for January, February, July, and August in 1974 and 1976 to 1983, have been analyzed. Each station reported O3, NO3, SO2, and the coefficient of haze (COH) every hour and aerosol sulfates for a 24-hr period every sixth day using glass-fiber filters. Data on mean daily temperature and relative humidity for the region were also recorded. It is shown that there are high correlations between different pollutants and between these and temperature in the summer. In the summer, sulfate levels were significantly correlated with relative humidity. In winter, the highest correlation was between COH and NO2. Over the 9-year period, SO2 levels in both winter and summer have fallen considerably; there have been no significant trends in O3, NO3, or COH data. Aerosol sulfates increased between 1976 and 1980 in both summer and winter and have since declined slightly. Hospital admission data for the 79 acute care hospitals serving the region, which contains about 5.9 million people, have been analyzed on a daily basis for the same months of the same years. Total admissions and total respiratory admissions have declined about 15% over the period, but asthma admissions appear to have risen. The asthma category of admissions is complicated by the effects of a change in ICD coding in 1979. It has been shown that significant correlations exist between O3, SO4, SO2, and temperature, on the one hand, and deviations from the mean respiratory admissions for that day of the week, for that season, for that year, on the other. These correlations exist if asthma is excluded from the diagnoses. In winter, asthma admissions are correlated with temperature only. A group of nonrespiratory conditions showed no correlations with air pollutants in winter or summer. Stepwise multiple regression analysis based on each year considered individually indicates that in summer SO4 and temperature account for about 5% of the variance in respiratory or asthma admissions. It is shown that the mean of the hourly ozone maxima has a high correlation with the maximal 8-hr average for ozone, and that using this index instead of the mean of the hourly maxima does not increase the correlation coefficient with respiratory disease. Another analysis has been performed by grouping the hospitals and sampling stations into nine separate regions.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 400 WORDS)
Recent epidemiologic studies report a significant association between alcohol consumption and elevations in both systolic (SBP) and diastolic (DBP) blood pressures. To test this hypothesis, we conducted a multivariate analysis of physical examination and other data on 721 men and 697 women aged 20 or more collected during the Canada Health Survey in 1978-1979. SBP and DBP were considered as separate dependent variables in multiple regression models with the following independent variables: age, alcohol consumption (measured as a 7-day recall history and as an average frequency of consumption), serum cholesterol, plasma glucose, physical activity, Quetelet index, parental history of hypertension, cigarette consumption, income, education, and exogenous hormonal use in women. In both weighted and unweighted multiple regression analyses, we could not demonstrate for either sex, a significant association between alcohol consumption (as recorded and following quadratic and logarithmic transformations) and either SBP or DBP. For both sexes, only age and Quetelet index were highly significantly (P less than 0.0001) and consistently associated with both SBP and DBP. No other independent variables were consistently associated, for either sex, with SBP and DBP. Further, the dose-response patterns noted by other investigators suggesting either a positive and linear relationship or a curvilinear relationship were not found in either our univariate or multivariate analyses. Rather, the alcohol-blood pressure curves showed no consistent patterns of any kind in either sex. These findings do not support recent claims that alcohol consumption is a determinant of elevations in either SBP or DBP.
This paper describes a UNEP/WHO project on the assessment of human exposure to lead and cadmium through analysis of blood and kidneys. The following countries have participated: Belgium, India, Israel, Japan, Mexico, People's Republic of China, Peru, Sweden, United States, and Yugoslavia. No laboratory started the monitoring before achieving satisfactory results of quality control (QC) analysis (samples of cow blood spiked with lead and cadmium and freeze-dried horse kidney cortex for cadmium analysis) according to predetermined criteria based on a linear regression model. Two hundred teachers from one urban area in each country constituted the target group for lead and cadmium in blood and cases of "sudden, unexpected death" for cadmium in kidney cortex. QC samples were analyzed in parallel with the monitoring samples to assure validity of the obtained results. The quality assurance program also included preanalytical quality control. There was considerable variation in metal exposure between areas. Geometric means for lead in blood ranged from about 60 micrograms Pb/liter in Beijing and Tokyo to 225 in Mexico City. The values were below 100 micrograms Pb/liter also in Baltimore, Jerusalem, Lima, Stockholm, and Zagreb, and between 100 and 200 micrograms Pb/liter in Brussels and India. In general, males had higher blood levels than females and smokers higher than nonsmokers. With a few exceptions the values were lower than results reported in a recent study within the European Communities. Geometric means for cadmium in blood ranged from 0.5 microgram Cd/liter in Stockholm and Jerusalem to 1.2 in Brussels and Tokyo. Cadmium levels were considerably higher among smokers than among nonsmokers. Tokyo had the highest values for cadmium in kidney cortex with a geometric mean in the age group 40-60 years of 60-70 mg Cd/kg wet wt. Lowest values were found in Baltimore, Beijing, India, and Jerusalem, with means around 20-25 mg Cd/kg wet wt. There was a tendency toward higher values for smokers than for nonsmokers, but no differences related to sex. Data were not received from Mexico and Peru.
By means of a multivariate regression analysis, we have studied the importance of atopy, "wet" and "dry" occupations, and domestic work as risk factors for hand eczema. Hand eczema was identified by questionnaire. The studied cohort consisted of 2452 newly employed hospital workers with a median follow-up time of 20 months. Of the total cohort studied, 86% were female. The total occurrence of hand eczema in the 4 occupational groups studied were: nursing staff 41%, kitchen workers/cleaners 37%, office workers 25% and caretakers/craftsmen 17%. Atopic dermatitis increased the odds of developing hand eczema by 3 times in wet as well as in dry work. Subjects with atopic dermatitis developed a more severe hand eczema than subjects with atopic mucosal symptoms and non-atopics. Wet hospital work increased the odds by a factor of 2 compared to dry office work. 2 anamnestically available parameters of domestic work, namely "nursing of children younger than 4 years" and "absence of dish-washing machine" were found to significantly increase the risk of developing hand eczema. Wet work in combination with unfavourable domestic factors increased the odds by a factor of 4. The caretakers/craftsmen group, which was dominated by men, showed the lowest figure for hand eczema.
This study examines various work and retirement orientations and ascertains how they apply to four a priori-defined groups. Questionnaire data from an age-stratified random sample of 584 men and women, aged sixty to seventy-five, were analyzed by means of stepwise multiple discriminant analysis. Fourteen out of twenty-five variables contributed significantly to three functions, correctly classifying 54% of the individuals. It was found that preretirees, although anticipating loss of employment after retiring, displayed the least work satisfaction and preferred a lower retirement age, manifesting simultaneous positive attitudes toward retirees and their gatherings; early retirees were characterized by negative attitudes toward work as well as retirement and by ambiguous views of retirees and social integration; working retirees appeared the most work-oriented and evidenced distaste for retirement; fully retired persons were characterized as retirement-oriented and as being negative toward social activities. The results are discussed within the context of previous hypotheses and related findings.
This paper discusses several practical problems in research design: Is it worth doing a relatively "quick and dirty" study or is a more thorough study using all available information necessary? All the desired information may either not be available or be time-consuming to collect. What are the likely biases in going ahead and doing the research with the data base "in hand"? Such issues are important because of the limited resources for technology assessment (in terms of money, number of researchers, and research interest) and the great number of unstudied technologies.
A blood lead survey was conducted on samples from 2459 children aged 3-6 years to determine the prevalence of lead poisoning in children of this age in the Province of Ontario. Lead poisoning, defined as a blood lead concentration greater than or equal to 1.21 mumol 1-1 (25 micrograms dl-1), was found in 26 subjects (1.1% of the samples). The mean blood lead concentration for children from southern Ontario was 0.50 mumol l-1, and for those from northern Ontario it was 0.37 mumol l-1. Stringent quality controls and independent cross-checks of finger-prick capillary blood sampling were employed in the study. The free erythrocyte protoporphyrin levels were also monitored to detect the presence of iron deficiency in the children.
This study was performed to investigate whether a moderately sized population of men (n = 954) living in a geographically defined area could be utilized and give valid results in a 13-year prospective study regarding mortality as a function of blood pressure. Isotonic regression of blood pressure on age was used to define groups of men with low, medium, and high blood pressure. Men aged 40-69 years in both extreme groups showed an excess death risk in comparison with those in the medium group. Thus, mortality appeared to be a U-shaped function of blood pressure in this age group. The mortality ratios of the low and high blood pressure groups vis-à-vis the medium group were higher during the first than during the second half of the observation period. Chronic diseases at the time of the initial examination were more common among men who died in the lowest blood pressure group than among those who died in the medium group. In males aged 70-99 years, blood pressure appeared to be of less importance as a risk indicator of death.