eLetters

77 e-Letters

published between 2001 and 2004

  • Letter to Chang et al.
    John W Cherrie

    Dear Editor

    The paper by Chang et al[1] defined a Protective Effectiveness Index (PEI) as a measure of the protection afforded by gloves, whereas in reality it indicates the overall difference in exposure between two groups of workers where other important exposure factors may not be, indeed were not, the same. This raises the possibility that your readers may mistake this index as a reliable guide to glove prot...

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  • Authors' reply
    David Gimeno

    Dear Editor

    In response to our study,[1] Kivimäki et al suggested that reported sickness absence frequencies were underestimates of the total sickness absence burden in European Union (EU) member countries.[2] This concern about the veracity of these estimates led Kivimäki et al to caution policy makers to not use this data to inform policy. While we agree that more research is needed to establish...

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  • Are sickness absence frequencies in the study of EU countries underestimates?
    Mika Kivimäki

    Dear Editor

    The paper by Gimeno et al provides a comparison of sickness absence between 15 European Union (EU) countries.[1] According to this study, 14.5% of employees were absent at least one day in the past 12 months by an accident at work, by health problems caused by the work, or by other health problems. For Finnish employees, for instance, this percentage was 24%, the highest among the 15 EU countr...

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  • Re-employment of NHS staff following retirement on the grounds of ill-health
    Mark S Newson-Smith

    Dear Editor

    Pattani and colleagues present some interesting and useful findings in an area of great importance to the delivery of health care within the United Kingdom.[1] They note that “doctors were nearly four times more likely to return to work as health care assistants and support staff” and that “this may reflect more flexible working opportunities for highly skilled staff”. I would suggest that it might al...

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  • Radiation as a cause of mesothelioma.
    John H. Lange

    Dear Editor

    Atkinson et al,[1] reported “particularly among those monitored for plutonium exposure there was a significant excess mortality from cancer of the pleura”.

    However, they also note the lack of a trend for radiation dose. The authors’ suggest that these cancers are mostly mesothelioma and that asbestos is the likely causative agent. There is no mention of other agents that can cause mesothe...

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  • Perecived risk from stress is not objective risk from stress
    Kevin Daniels

    Dear Editor

    Gimeno, Amick, Benavides and Benach [1] raise a number of issues with a paper recently published in Occupational and Environmental Medicine.[2] It is important that researchers cross-examine others’ findings and conclusions, as well as explain and defend their own findings and conclusions, so that debate can proceed that is both informed and useful for policy and practice.

    In the original...

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  • Response to an "ECHO" on workplace based faecal occult blood screening
    Andreas Zober

    In a recent short report, a summary of the results of a workplace based colorectal tumour-screening programme in UK was given.[1]

    During 2001-02 we organised a similar programme within BASF's – the world's largest chemical company – Ludwigshafen/Germany site. Our findings were published in a German language paper.[2] Our target group included all 13 265 actively working employees aged 45 years or above. Those exp...

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  • Bias and caution
    David Gimeno

    Dear Editor

    A recent article by Daniels [1] in this journal presented occupational stress data from the 15 European Union (EU) countries.

    Cross- national comparisons contribute to our scientific understanding of how and why health-related indicators (i.e. stress) are unequally distributed across countries and provide clues and guidelines for researchers, policy makers and trade unions at the EU level. Howeve...

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  • Nuclear Test Veterans
    Colin R. Muirhead

    Dear Editor

    In the March 2003 issue of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Muirhead et al.[1] described an analysis of mortality and cancer incidence among UK participants in the UK atmospheric nuclear weapons test programme.

    Comparisons were made between a pre-defined cohort of test participants and a matched control group. Both groups of men were identified during the 1980s from contemporary...

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  • Comments on article by Andersen et al
    David Fishbain

    Dear Editor

    In a recent interesting research report published in your journal, Andersen et al. [1] performed a 4-year prospective COHORT study with yearly assessments trying to develop variables that could predict the development of new onset neck/shoulder pain. They determined that repetitive movements of the shoulder/arm, jobs with high demands and low control were variables which were all independently a...

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