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Psychosocial work environment and risk of ischaemic heart disease in women
  1. Ari Väänänen
  1. Correspondence to Dr Ari Väänänen, Finnish Institute of Occupational Health, Centre of Expertise for Work Organizations, Topeliuksenkatu 41 a A, Helsinki FI-00250, Finland; ari.vaananen{at}ttlfigi

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This large-scale Danish study suggests that self-evaluated, overwhelming subjective pressure at work is likely to increase the risk of subsequent ischaemic heart diseases (IHD) among women, after adjustment for various conventional risk factors. These prospective data add to the literature proposing a causal association between work stress and coronary heart disease (CHD) among women. This is interesting, as the predictive and prognostic impact of work stress on CHD among women has rarely been studied using adequate research designs, and often unexpected or non-significant results have been reported. For instance, the Framingham offspring study, contrary to expectations, found that women with active jobs (high demands–high control) had an almost threefold higher risk of CHD compared to women with high job strain (high demands–low control),1 while for men the risk factors were not related to work stress. The Nurses' Health Study, on the other hand, found no association between job strain and CHD among women.2 A Swedish study on prognostic impact showed that marital stress is associated with a threefold higher …

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