Cardiovascular conditions, hearing difficulty, and occupational noise exposure within US industries and occupations

Background: The purpose of this study was to estimate the prevalence of occupational noise exposure, hearing difficulty and cardiovascular conditions within US industries and occupations, and to examine any associations of these outcomes with occupational noise exposure.
Methods: National Health Interview Survey data from 2014 were examined. Weighted prevalence and adjusted prevalence ratios of self-reported hearing difficulty, hypertension, elevated cholesterol, and coronary heart disease or stroke were estimated by level of occupational noise exposure, industry, and occupation.
Results: Twenty-five percent of current workers had a history of occupational noise exposure (14% exposed in the last year), 12% had hearing difficulty, 24% had hypertension, 28% had elevated cholesterol; 58%, 14%, and 9% of these cases can be attributed to occupational noise exposure, respectively.
Conclusions: Hypertension, elevated cholesterol, and hearing difficulty are more prevalent among noise-exposed workers. Reducing workplace noise levels is critical. Workplace-based health and wellness programs should also be considered.

Source: Kerns, E., Masterson, E. A., Themann, C. L. et Calvert, G. M. (2018). American journal of industrial medicine.
https://doi.org/10.1002/ajim.22833

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