In the present study, pure-tone audiometry was used in 687 Finnish school children, aged 6-15 years, to determine the prevalence of a 6 kHz acoustic dip and related factors among three age groups. Trained audiometricians tested air conduction thresholds in a sound-proof room. A total of 57 children (8.3%) had a clear-cut dip of at least 20 dB at 6 kHz. This dip was more pronounced in older children and in boys. A thorough case history was obtained by questionnaire, with logistic regression analysis showing that low birth weight (
Successful academic performance during adolescence is a key predictor of lifetime achievement, including occupational and social success. The present study investigated the important transition from primary to secondary schooling during early adolescence, when academic performance among youth often declines. The goal of the study was to understand how risk factors, specifically lower family resources and male gender, threaten academic success following this "critical transition" in schooling. The study involved a longitudinal examination of the predictors of academic performance in grades 7-8 among 127 (56 % girls) French-speaking Quebec (Canada) adolescents from lower-income backgrounds. As hypothesized based on transition theory, hierarchical regression analyses showed that supportive parenting and specific academic, social and behavioral competencies (including spelling ability, social skills, and lower levels of attention problems) predicted success across this transition among at-risk youth. Multiple-mediation procedures demonstrated that the set of compensatory factors fully mediated the negative impact of lower family resources on academic success in grades 7-8. Unique mediators (social skills, spelling ability, supportive parenting) also were identified. In addition, the "gender gap" in performance across the transition could be attributed statistically to differences between boys and girls in specific competencies observed prior to the transition, as well as differential parenting (i.e., support from mother) towards girls and boys. The present results contribute to our understanding of the processes by which established risk factors, such as low family income and gender impact development and academic performance during early adolescence. These "transitional" processes and subsequent academic performance may have consequences across adolescence and beyond, with an impact on lifetime patterns of achievement and occupational success.
The paper concerns the accuracy of two dental methods of age estimation based on the radiographic appearance of the root of the lower third molar. The first dental method tested was traditional with a subjective assessment of the root development stage and the second was a new method with a metric measurement of formed root length. Since previous studies have shown a relatively low precision for dentally based age estimation methods during adolescence, an additional independent indicator of chronological age was employed, namely skeletal maturity according to the atlas and method of Greulich and Pyle (Radiographic Atlas of Skeletal Development of the Hand and Wrist Stanford University Press, CA, 1959). The material was Swedish adolescents aged 12-19 years. It was found that all methods gave an overestimation of chronological age, with the highest overestimation, more than 1 year, for the two dental methods. A stepwise multiple regression analysis indicated that skeletal age alone explains 48% of the variation in estimated chronological age. It may be concluded that the accuracy of age estimations based on the lower third molars is quite uncertain during adolescence. Up to 18 years, it is preferable to use skeletal age alone as a predictor. Only a small increase in the explanation coefficient of age variation (3-4%) could be seen if digitized or subjectively estimated root lengths were added as predictors to the skeletal estimation.
Little attention has been devoted to the effects on children's respiratory health of exposure to sulphur dioxide (SO2) in ambient air from local industrial emissions. Most studies on the effects of SO(2) have assessed its impact as part of the regional ambient air pollutant mix.
To examine the association between exposure to stack emissions of SO(2) from petroleum refineries located in Montreal's (Quebec) east-end industrial complex and the prevalence of active asthma and poor asthma control among children living nearby.
The present cross-sectional study used data from a respiratory health survey of Montreal children six months to 12 years of age conducted in 2006. Of 7964 eligible households that completed the survey, 842 children between six months and 12 years of age lived in an area impacted by refinery emissions. Ambient SO(2) exposure levels were estimated using dispersion modelling. Log-binomial regression models were used to estimate crude and adjusted prevalence ratios (PRs) and 95% CIs for the association between yearly school and residential SO(2) exposure estimates and asthma outcomes. Adjustments were made for child's age, sex, parental history of atopy and tobacco smoke exposure at home.
The adjusted PR for the association between active asthma and SO(2) levels was 1.14 (95% CI 0.94 to 1.39) per interquartile range increase in modelled annual SO(2). The effect on poor asthma control was greater (PR=1.39 per interquartile range increase in modelled SO(2) [95% CI 1.00 to 1.94]).
Results of the present study suggest a relationship between exposure to refinery stack emissions of SO(2) and the prevalence of active and poor asthma control in children who live and attend school in proximity to refineries.
The APHEA 2 project investigated short-term health effects of particles in eight European cities. In each city associations between particles with an aerodynamic diameter of less than 10 microm (PM(10)) and black smoke and daily counts of emergency hospital admissions for asthma (0-14 and 15-64 yr), chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and all-respiratory disease (65+ yr) controlling for environmental factors and temporal patterns were investigated. Summary PM(10) effect estimates (percentage change in mean number of daily admissions per 10 microg/m(3) increase) were asthma (0-14 yr) 1.2% (95% CI: 0.2, 2.3), asthma (15-64 yr) 1.1% (0.3, 1.8), and COPD plus asthma and all-respiratory (65+ yr) 1.0% (0.4, 1.5) and 0.9% (0.6, 1.3). The combined estimates for Black Smoke tended to be smaller and less precisely estimated than for PM(10). Variability in the sizes of the PM(10) effect estimates between cities was also investigated. In the 65+ groups PM(10) estimates were positively associated with annual mean concentrations of ozone in the cities. For asthma admissions (0-14 yr) a number of city-specific factors, including smoking prevalence, explained some of their variability. This study confirms that particle concentrations in European cities are positively associated with increased numbers of admissions for respiratory diseases and that some of the variation in PM(10) effect estimates between cities can be explained by city characteristics.
OBJECTIVES--To identify families in which the parents reported the child's illness as particularly stressful (high perception of illness threat), and to find out which health problems the parents perceive as particularly threatening. DESIGN--The parents registered the diagnosis and perception of illness threat in relation to the child's latest illness within a four-week retrospective period. Selected psychosocial conditions of the families were recorded in the same questionnaire. SETTING--18,949 families with at least one child under the age of 8 years, resident in the County of Ringkøbing in western Denmark at 1 March 1988. SUBJECTS--An age-stratified random sample of 1982 families was entered in the study. 85% of the families returned the questionnaire. RESULTS--There was a considerable variation in the parents' perception of illness threat. On the basis of a score it was possible to group parents with a high, medium, and low perception of illness threat. Every fourth family reported a high perception of illness threat. A multivariate analysis, with a high perception of illness threat as dependent and selected psychosocial conditions and the diagnosis as independent variables, led to the following main results: 1) parents with a high perception of the general health threat ("worried" parents) most frequently reported a high perception of illness threat, 2) the diagnoses were decisive; in particular, inflammation in the middle ear, bronchitis, pneumonia, and accidents led to the parents' reporting a high perception of illness threat, 3) parents without experience of children and children's illnesses more frequently perceived an actual illness as a high illness threat than parents with this experience, 4) parents more frequently perceive an illness in girls as a high illness threat. CONCLUSIONS--"Worried" parents, without experience of children and children's illnesses, perceive the child's latest illness as a high illness threat. These families need special care.
OBJECTIVES--To describe parent-reported morbidity in relation to the psycho-social conditions of the families and to characterize families whose children are frequently ill. DESIGN--The parent-reported morbidity in a two-month prospective period, and the psychosocial conditions of the families were registered by means of a questionnaire. The conditioned probability of parents' reporting an episode of illness was estimated by means of logistic regression analysis, taking the psycho-social conditions into consideration. SETTING--18,949 families with at least one child under the age of 8 years, resident in the County of Ringkjøbing in western Denmark at 1 March 1988. SUBJECTS--An age-stratified random sample of 1982 families was entered in the study. 1588 (82%) families returned the questionnaire. RESULTS--The parents reported considerable morbidity in their children. The cumulative incidence proportion (CIP) for the period was 48%. The multivariate analysis of the parent-reported morbidity led to the following main results: 1) the morbidity was greatest for children aged 6 to 18 months, after which it decreased with age, 2) there was interaction between the care conditions and the child's age--CIP for children up to two years was largest for the children who were cared for in daycare, while the CIP for the older children was largest for the children who were cared for at home, 3) if the parents reported that the child's siblings suffered from chronic or frequently recurring morbidity, the child's morbidity rate was significantly increased, 4) mothers with higher education reported more morbidity in their children than mothers without this education, and 5) parents with a high perception of the general health threat ("worried" parents) reported more morbidity than did parents with a low perception. CONCLUSIONS--The results made it possible to characterize families whose children were frequently reported ill.
Public Health Agency of Canada, Centre for Food-Borne, Environmental and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases, Environmental Issues Division, Canada; Faculty of Medicine, Department of Community Health and Epidemiology, Queen's University, Canada. Electronic address: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The purpose of this study was to assess the effects of extreme ambient temperature on hospital emergency room visits (ER) related to mental and behavioral illnesses in Toronto, Canada.
A time series study was conducted using health and climatic data from 2002 to 2010 in Toronto, Canada. Relative risks (RRs) for increases in emergency room (ER) visits were estimated for specific mental and behavioral diseases (MBD) after exposure to hot and cold temperatures while using the 50th percentile of the daily mean temperature as reference. Poisson regression models using a distributed lag non-linear model (DLNM) were used. We adjusted for the effects of seasonality, humidity, day-of-the-week and outdoor air pollutants.
We found a strong association between MBD ER visits and mean daily temperature at 28?C. The association was strongest within a period of 0-4 days for exposure to hot temperatures. A 29% (RR=1.29, 95% CI 1.09-1.53) increase in MBD ER vists was observed over a cumulative period of 7 days after exposure to high ambient temperature (99th percentile vs. 50th percentile). Similar associations were reported for schizophrenia, mood, and neurotic disorers. No significant associations with cold temperatures were reported.
The ecological nature and the fact that only one city was investigated.
Our findings suggest that extreme temperature poses a risk to the health and wellbeing for individuals with mental and behavior illnesses. Patient management and education may need to be improved as extreme temperatures may become more prevalent with climate change.
The purpose of this study was to describe levels of inflammation markers in Norwegian children and to examine the associations of adiposity, aerobic fitness, and muscle fitness with markers of inflammation.
In 2005-2006, 1467 nine-year-olds were randomly selected from all regions in Norway. The participation rate was 89%. The inflammatory markers evaluated included C-reactive protein (CRP), leptin, adiponectin, plasminogen activator inhibitor-1, tumor necrosis factor-a, hepatocyte growth factor, resistin, and interleukin-6. We assessed muscular strength by measuring explosive, isometric, and endurance strength. Aerobic fitness was measured directly during a maximal cycle ergometer test. Adiposity was expressed as waist circumference (WC).
The girls had significantly higher levels of CRP, leptin, adiponectin, and resistin and lower levels of tumor necrosis factor-a compared with the boys. We observed a graded association of CRP and leptin levels across quintiles of WC, aerobic fitness, and muscle fitness (P = 0.001 for all participants). The regression analyses revealed that WC, aerobic fitness, and muscle fitness were independently associated with the CRP (WC ß = 0.158, P
This paper examines whether the relationship between parental work and adolescents' well-being would be mediated through parenting behaviour. The primary focus was on the experiences of adolescents. Questionnaire-based data from families (both parents and one children, n = 77) and adolescents (n = 126) were collected in Finland in 2000 and 2001, respectively. The adolescents were on average 14 years old. Results showed that the relationships between parents' negative work experiences and adolescents' depression (all perceived by adolescents) were partially mediated by adolescents' experience of lessened autonomy granting in parenting and increased conflicts between parents and adolescents. In addition, the relations between fathers' negative work experiences and adolescents' negative attitude regarding school (all reported by adolescents) were mediated by adolescents' perceptions of increased conflicts between fathers and adolescents.