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Work and organisational and psychosocial factors II


V. Rini, K. Philippe, M. Ina, G. Inge, V. Isolde, B. Lutgart.Department of Public Health, Ghent University, De Pintelaan 185, 9000 Ghent, Belgium

Background: Several epidemiological studies indicate a number of health risks in shift workers. New legislation in Belgium regarding a more stringent and intensified medical occupational surveillance of night and shift workers implies a greater focus on these health risks. Until now, few studies in Belgium have investigated the interaction between changed sleep patterns in these populations and (subjective) health.

Methods: A sample of 119 male shift workers received a self-administered questionnaire, of which 113 workers completed the questionnaire under the guidance of the company doctor or nurse, during working hours. The questionnaire contained, besides a number of general demographic and health parameters, two international standardised sleep questionnaires: the PSQI (Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index) and the ESS (Epworth Sleeping Scale). The subjective health parameters were dichotomised and evaluated in relation to the tertiles of the scores of the two sleeping scales. Odds ratios (OR) were calculated with a 95% confidence interval (CI).

Results: Mean age was 37.0 years (SD 9.11). The average working time in a shift system was 13.1 years (SD 8.1). 43.8% of the workers smoked and average coffee intake per shift was 3.5 cups. The average PSQI was 7.89 (SD 3.18). The average ESS was 8.56 (SD 4.36). With regard to the PSQI: comparing the third tertile (T3) to the first (T1), logistic regression showed significant odds ratios for PSQI regarding stomach problems (OR = 4.19), musculoskeletal problems (OR = 3.76), fatigue (OR = 40.25), waking up tired (OR = 15.61), having trouble concentrating (OR = 10.43), and stress (OR = 6.18). With regard to the ESS: comparing T3 to T1, logistic regression only showed significant odds ratios for ESS regarding fatigue (OR = 8.80) and waking up tired (OR = 2.92).

Conclusion: In this small population, the sleep quality …

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