International Journal of Medical Sciences

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21 October 2017

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Int J Med Sci 2007; 4(1):7-12. doi:10.7150/ijms.4.7

Research Paper

Low socio-economic status, smoking, mental stress and obesity predict obstructive symptoms in women, but only smoking also predicts subsequent experience of poor health

Jörgen Thorn1, Cecilia Björkelund1, Calle Bengtsson1, Xinxin Guo2, Lauren Lissner1, Valter Sundh1

1. Department of Public Health and Community Medicine/Primary Health Care, The Sahlgrenska Academy at Göteborg University, SE-405 30 Göteborg, Sweden
2. Neuropsychiatric Epidemiology Unit, Institute of Clinical Neurosciences, The Sahlgrenska Academy at Göteborg University, SE-405 30 Göteborg, Sweden

Abstract

This study was conducted among female subjects to assess the possible association between selected risk factors and lung function as well as airway symptoms in a 32-year perspective. The Prospective Population Study of Women was initiated in 1968-1969 in Göteborg, Sweden (population about 450 000) with follow-ups in 1974-1975, 1980-1981, 1992-1993 and 2000-2001. Women born in 1930, representative of women of the same age in the general population in 1968, were selected. Initially, 372 participants were included in the cohort. In 2000-2001, 231 of these women (73%), now 70 years old, underwent lung function tests. The main outcome measures were lung function values, airway symptoms and health outcome in 2000-2001 in relation to self-reported exposures in 1968-1969 including smoking status. Smoking in 1968-1969 was associated with self-reported chronic bronchitis, obstructive symptoms and poor health 32 years later as well as lower lung function values, compared to non-smokers. Obesity, low socio-economic status and self-reported mental stress in 1968-1969 were associated with obstructive symptoms 32 years later. There are only a few longitudinal studies concerning women's health problems in this field and epidemiological studies of lung function impairment in women and risk factors in a long-term perspective are scarce. The results of the study suggest that life-style factors such as mental stress, obesity and smoking among women are related to airway symptoms and also quality of life many years later.

Keywords: Population study, female, smoking, socio-economic status, lung function

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How to cite this article:
Thorn J, Björkelund C, Bengtsson C, Guo X, Lissner L, Sundh V. Low socio-economic status, smoking, mental stress and obesity predict obstructive symptoms in women, but only smoking also predicts subsequent experience of poor health. Int J Med Sci 2007; 4(1):7-12. doi:10.7150/ijms.4.7. Available from http://www.medsci.org/v04p0007.htm