Objectives During the last decades a possible association between the psychosocial working environment and increased risk of Ischaemic heart disease (IHD) has been debated. A systematic review from 2009 found moderate evidence that high psychological demands, lack of social support and iso-strain was associated with IHD. Whether the psychosocial working environment plays a role for patients with existing cardiovascular disease on the risk of new cardiac events and readmissions is unknown
Method A cohort of patients under 65 years and treated with Percutaneous Coronary Intervention was established in 2006. Three months after the procedure the patients answered a questionnaire about their psychosocial working environment. A total of 528 patients had returned to work 12 weeks after the procedure, while 97 were still sick-listed. Patients were followed in registers for 3+ years to determine cardiac readmissions and events. We examined the association between psychosocial working environment and adverse events among those who had returned to work at 3 months by Cox Regression analysis.
Results We were not able to detect any significant associations between psychosocial working environment in terms of quantitative and cognitive demands, workload, involvement, influence, tolerance, social support, the combinations of effort-reward and demand-control and the risk of adverse events.
Conclusions Reporting of problems in the psychosocial working environment are not associated with risk of adverse cardiac events. However, tendencies of a lower risk of cardiac event were present for employees reporting the worst psychosocial environment. This unexpected finding may be explained by vulnerable persons not returning to work.
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