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Work-related risk factors for cardiovascular diseases

Project number: F 2235 Institution: Institut für Arbeits-, Sozial- und Umweltmedizin der Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz Status: Completed Project


BAuA had the privilege of being part of the baseline Gutenberg Health Study (formerly the Gutenberg Heart Study) in the Mainz area. In the baseline examination of the cohort study, some 15,000 people between the ages of 25 and 74 were examined between the years of 2007 and 2012 with the primary goal of improving the risk forecasting for selected diseases. The focus was on the characterisation of early cardiovascular changes with the use of innovative measurement techniques (such as non-invasive measurements of blood vessel functions). The study included a six-hour programme of clinical examinations as well as an extensive survey.

From the perspective of occupational medicine, occupational history, and occupational psychosocial risk factors as well as resources for the current occupation were investigated. As regards psychosocial stress, a self-administered questionnaire with the COPSOQ instrument (Copenhagen Psychosocial Questionnaire), as previously evaluated in other BAuA projects, as well as the ERI instrument (Effort Reward Imbalance), as developed by Siegrist, were used. The occupational history, including information on the respondents' history of night work and overtime work, was collected in a computer-assisted interview (CAPI) to ascertain the whole of the work history.

In this respect, the project team examined a range of research questions (including the validity of the occupational coding, the comparison of methods and internal validity of COPSOQ/ERI, the development of a bullying scale (Mobbing Short Scale), associations between work-life conflicts and occupational and private stress factors, as well as associations between night shift work and selected functional parameters of cardiovascular health). In the most recent analysis of the extended occupational history, risk factors of cardiovascular diseases in managers were examined.

The findings from the project were incorporated into a series of publications between 2013 and 2019 which you can view or purchase below. The F 2338 follow-up project "Occupational risk factors for cardiovascular diseases - prospective analysis of the Gutenberg Health Study (GHS)" further examines associations between occupational risk factors and cardiovascular diseases, as well as cardiovascular changes.



Unit 3.1 "Prevention of Work-related Diseases"

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