Investigating the relationship between job stress, workload and oxidative stress in nurses.
Biganeh Jamal,Ashtarinezhad Azadeh,Behzadipour Davood,Khanjani Narges,Tavakoli Nik Atefeh,Bagheri Hosseinabadi Majid
International journal of occupational safety and ergonomics : JOSE
Occupational stress and workload are common risk factors among nurses that increase absenteeism, reduce the quality and quantity of patient care, increase care costs and increase the patient safety risk. The relation between these risk factors and oxidative stress levels has not been clearly defined. This study was conducted with 258 participants (126 nurses as the case group and 132 healthy adults as the control group). Information was collected using a demographic questionnaire, the nurses' occupational stress scale and the NASA task load index workload questionnaire. Blood samples were taken from the participants and then the levels of malondialdehyde (MDA), superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase and total antioxidant capacity (TAC) were measured in the serum samples. Independent tests and one-way analysis of variance were used for statistical analysis. SOD and TAC were significantly higher and MDA was significantly lower among the case group compared to the control group. TAC levels significantly decreased with increased stress. MDA levels showed negative associations with stress and workload. Nurses experience high levels of occupational stress and workload. Biomarkers such as SOD, TAC and MDA are the most important predictors of work stress and overwork in this study.
Long working hours and occupational stress-related cardiovascular attacks among middle-aged workers in Japan.
Journal of human ergology
Two hundred and three Karoshi victims who suffered cardiovascular attacks and for whom workers' compensations was claimed were surveyed. These cases were 196 males and 7 females in middle age, and comprised 123 strokes, 50 acute cardiac failures, 27 myocardial infarctions and 4 aortic ruptures. As a sociomedical background, it was shown that two-thirds of them were working for long hours such as more than 60 hr per week, more than 50 hr overtime per month, or more than half of their fixed holidays before the attack. Moreover, among the white-collar workers, these long working hours were accompanied with other stressful work issues such as career problems, excessive business trips, strident norms, and changes of work places; among the blue-collar workers, they were accompanied with those such as irregular midnight work, insufficient manpower and long-distance driving, etc. On the other hand, eighty-eight cases of them experienced several minor and sudden events including work-related emotional anxiety or excitement, rapid increase of workload, unexpected work trouble or environmental changes of work places anticipated at least within 24 hr directly before the attack. It was concluded that Karoshi, meaning fatal attacks by overload, was one of the work-related diseases mainly triggered by long working hours.
Effect of overtime work on 24-hour ambulatory blood pressure.
Hayashi T,Kobayashi Y,Yamaoka K,Yano E
Journal of occupational and environmental medicine
Recently, the adverse effects of long working hours on the cardiovascular systems of workers in Japan, including "Karoshi" (death from overwork), have been the focus of social concern. However, conventional methods of health checkups are often unable to detect the early signs of such adverse effects. To evaluate the influence of overtime work on the cardiovascular system, we compared 24-hour blood pressure measurements among several groups of male white-collar workers. As a result, for those with normal blood pressure and those with mild hypertension, the 24-hour average blood pressure of the overtime groups was higher than that of the control groups; for those who periodically did overtime work, the 24-hour average blood pressure and heart rate during the busy period increased. These results indicate that the burden on the cardiovascular system of white-collar workers increases with overtime work.
Job strain and risk of cardiovascular events in treated hypertensive Japanese workers: hypertension follow-up group study.
Uchiyama Shuji,Kurasawa Takashi,Sekizawa Toshihiro,Nakatsuka Hiroshi
Journal of occupational health
In Japan, Karoshi, which means "death from overwork", has become a focus of social concern. However, no previous study has examined long working hours and job strain simultaneously in relation to incidence of cardiovascular events (CVE) in Japanese workers. We prospectively evaluated the relation between job strain or long working hours and risk of CVE in treated hypertensives during the years 1994-2000. In this study, we followed a sample of 1,615 participants (908 men and 707 women) aged 40-65 yr who were working more than 5 working hours per day. Participants completed questions about work-related conditions and lifestyle variables at baseline, and were free of diagnosed cardiovascular disease, stroke or cancer. Job strain (the combination of job demands and job control) was assessed using a simple questionnaire developed with reference to Karasek's model. The main outcome measure was incidence of CVE. During the mean follow-up period of 5.6 yr, we documented 38 cases of initial CVE. Analyses were conducted using the Cox proportional hazard model. We found a significant association between incidence of CVE and job strain categories, but not long working hours. Multivariate relative risks for CVE in active jobs and high strain jobs overall were 2.89 (95% CI: 1.33-6.28) and 2.45 (95% CI: 0.87-6.93); for men 2.94 (95% CI: 1.29-6.73) and 1.86 (95% CI: 0.51-6.75), and for women 3.97 (95% CI: 0.34-46.88) and 9.05 (95% CI: 1.17-69.86), respectively. In conclusion, active jobs and high strain jobs were associated with increased risk of CVE for treated hypertensive workers.
Sociomedical problems of overwork-related deaths and disorders in Japan.
Journal of occupational health
OBJECTIVES:Cerebrovascular and cardiovascular diseases (CCVDs) and mental disorders, including suicide, are prevalent among overworked individuals in Japan. The 2014 legislation regarding the prevention of overwork-related deaths and disorders has accelerated the research in this field and ultimately the implementation of preventive actions. METHODS:To understand the current problematic situations, the Research Center for Overwork-Related Disorders of the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health, Japan, conducted analyses of compensated claims for overwork-related CCVDs and mental disorders that were recognized from January 2010 to March 2015. RESULTS:The majority of CCVD cases were the men in their 50s. Transport and postal activities was the highest risk industry. Cerebrovascular cases were higher than cardiovascular ones. Long working hours was the principal factor for CCVDs. The mental disorder cases comprised approximately 70% men and affected younger age groups (peak in the third decade) with various industries at risk. In men, there was an almost equal number of F3 (Mood [affective] disorders) and F4 (Neurotic, stress-related, and somatoform disorders) diagnoses according to the 10th revision of the International Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems. A larger number of women were diagnosed to have F4. The mental disorder cases were associated not only with long working hours, but also with injuries and disasters as well as interpersonal conflict at work. CONCLUSIONS:Multiple, simultaneous actions need to be made by employees, employers, researchers, and the authorities to achieve the goal of reducing the number of workers suffering from the overwork-related CCVDs and mental disorders.
[Overwork and its health effects--current status and future approach regarding Karoshi].
Sangyo eiseigaku zasshi = Journal of occupational health
The word karoshi, i.e. death due to overwork, is not defined for medical diagnosis, but in Japan it means cases of compensation awarded by reason of fatal occupational diseases, particularly ischemic heart diseases and cerebrovascular diseases which are recognized as caused by a heavy workload. Current studies have shown that 1) almost definitely there is evidence of an association between overwork and cardiovascular diseases and the risk factors were found, 2) no reports have been published on evidence of a causal relationship between overwork and fatal effects even though the possibility remains, and 3) the adverse health effects can vary according to workers' characteristics such as gender, age, stress coping and perception. Recently there has been an increase in the proportion of compensated cases versus claims from 3.1% in the 1988 fiscal year to 20.7% in the 2001 fiscal year. This may be related to the deregulation of criteria for compensation, or nintei-kijun. The period of determination of overwork for victims has been extended to a maximum of six months in the newest criteria set in 2001, up from only one week in the criteria set in 1987. According to sociological analysis, long working hours in Japan are related not only to the structure of the working-time system but also the sociocultural background of labor. In 2002, the Japanese government provided the first countermeasures for the prevention of karoshi for all employees stating that they should not work more than 45 h overtime per month and that government intervention in the form of administrative guidance to employees and their employers should be conducted if overtime exceeds 100 h per month. It is a population strategy targeting all workers equally, not just a high-risk strategy targeting only those with some risk factors, and is expected to provide more fruitful results with flexibility, i.e. differentially reinforced management for older workers and those working under highly stressful conditions with harmonization of the production cycle in the workplace. Occupational health professionals such as occupational health physicians and nurses will play a key role in making break-throughs to solve various problems related to karoshi, which may then result in further investigations to provide scientific evidence for policy making.
Low job control is associated with higher diastolic blood pressure in men with mildly elevated blood pressure: the Rosai Karoshi study.
Hattori Tomomi,Munakata Masanori
Job strain is a risk factor for hypertension, but it is not fully understood if components of job strain, or job demand or job control per se could be related to blood pressure (BP), and if so, whether the relationship differs between normotension and mildly elevated BP. We examined resting BP, and job stress components in 113 Japanese male hospital clerks (38.1 ± 4.4 yr). Subjects were classified into normotensive (NT) (<130/85 mmHg, n=83) and mildly elevated BP (ME) (≥130/85 mmHg) groups. Diastolic BP (DBP) showed a significant interaction between group and job control level (p=0.013). Subjects with low job control demonstrated higher DBP than those with high job control (89.1 ± 2.1 vs. 82.3 ± 2.3 mmHg, p=0.042) in ME group even after adjustments for covariates while DBP did not differ between low and high job control subjects in NT group. Systolic BP (SBP) did not differ between high and low job control subjects in both groups. Neither SBP nor DBP differed between high and low demand groups in either group. Among job strain components, job control may be independently related to BP in Japanese male workers with mildly elevated BP.
Three Cases of Karoshi Without the Typical Pathomorphological Features of Cardiovascular/Cerebrovascular Disease.
Miao Qi,Li Jing,Pan Yu-Peng,Yu Yan-Geng,Zhang Fu,Xiao Ning,Li Dong-Ri
The American journal of forensic medicine and pathology
Karoshi is a term used to describe unexplained sudden death associated with overwork and has become a serious public health issue in China. Cases have occurred in physicians, university professors, engineers in high-tech companies, and blue-collar workers. The mechanisms associated with death by overwork are very complex. According to most researchers, karoshi is considered to be caused by an excessive workload that induces deterioration of underlying hypertension or atherosclerosis. These conditions inevitably lead to death from cardiovascular or cerebrovascular diseases. However, in our own experience, we have found that in some cases, the victims of karoshi were in a chronic state of overwork but without a history of cardiovascular or cerebrovascular diseases. In support of this, we have found that even autopsies have revealed few positive findings except for cardiac hypertrophy. In this article, we report 3 typical cases of karoshi but without the typical pathomorphological features of cardiovascular or cerebrovascular disease.
Karoshi Related to Labor Intensity and Risk of Cardiovascular Events: A Case Report.
Liu Ning-guo,Wang Tao,Huang Pingf,Qing Zhi-qiang,Zhang Jian-hua,Chen Yi-jiu
Fa yi xue za zhi
Karoshi remains one of the most troublesome issues in forensic identification. It is rather a social medicine than a clinical disease. Japanese scholars pioneered examining the relation between sud- den cardiac death (SCD) and chronic fatigue from long time and/or high-tension work. In the current case, a 55-year-old man, whose job was loading and carrying heavy cement bags, was found dead after 11 days of continuous hard work. His family members sued the cement factory for his death and claimed for compensation. The problem was the difficulty of identifying the causative relation without the precedent or the relevant regulations. However, the forensic problems were finally acknowledged after autopsy and calculation of labor intensity. The lawsuit was won as the first case pertaining to Karoshi in the Chinese court.
Shorter sleep duration is associated with potential risks for overwork-related death among Japanese truck drivers: use of the Karoshi prodromes from worker's compensation cases.
Kubo Tomohide,Matsumoto Shun,Sasaki Takeshi,Ikeda Hiroki,Izawa Shuhei,Takahashi Masaya,Koda Shigeki,Sasaki Tsukasa,Sakai Kazuhiro
International archives of occupational and environmental health
PURPOSE:We aimed to cross-sectionally investigate how work and sleep conditions could be associated with excessive fatigue symptoms as an early sign of Karoshi (overwork-related cerebrovascular and cardiovascular diseases; CCVDs). METHODS:We distributed a questionnaire regarding work, sleep, and excessive fatigue symptoms to 5410 truck drivers, as the riskiest occupation for overwork-related CCVDs, and collected 1992 total samples (response rate: 36.8%). The research team collected 1564 investigation reports required for compensation for Karoshi. Of them, 190 reports listed the prodromes of Karoshi, which were used to develop the new excessive fatigue symptoms inventory. RESULTS:One-way analyses of variance showed that the excessive fatigue symptoms differed significantly by monthly overtime hours (p < 0.001), daily working time (p < 0.001), work schedule (p = 0.025), waiting time on-site (p = 0.049), number of night shifts (p = 0.011), and sleep duration on workdays (p < 0.001). Multivariate mixed-model regression analyses revealed shorter sleep duration as the most effective parameter for predicting excessive fatigue symptoms. Multiple logistic regression analysis confirmed that the occurrences of CCVDs were significantly higher in the middle [adjusted ORs = 3.56 (1.28-9.94)] and high-score groups [3.55 (1.24-10.21)] than in the low-score group. CONCLUSION:The findings suggested that shorter sleep duration was associated more closely with a marked increase in fatigue, as compared with the other work and sleep factors. Hence, ensuring sleep opportunities could be targeted for reducing the potential risks of Karoshi among truck drivers.
Health problems due to long working hours in Japan: working hours, workers' compensation (Karoshi), and preventive measures.
Iwasaki Kenji,Takahashi Masaya,Nakata Akinori
Late in the 1970s, serious social concern over health problems due to long working hours has arisen in Japan. This report briefly summarizes the Japanese circumstances about long working hours and what the Government has achieved so far. The national statistics show that more than 6 million people worked for 60 h or more per week during years 2000 and 2004. Approximately three hundred cases of brain and heart diseases were recognized as labour accidents resulting from overwork (Karoshi) by the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare (MHLW) between 2002 and 2005. Consequently, the MHLW has been working to establish a more appropriate compensation system for Karoshi, as well as preventive measures for overwork related health problems. In 2001, the MHLW set the standards for clearly recognizing Karoshi in association with the amount of overtime working hours. These standards were based on the results of a literature review and medical examinations indicating a relationship between overwork and brain and heart diseases. In 2002, the MHLW launched the program for the prevention of health impairment due to overwork, and in 2005 the health guidance through an interview by a doctor for overworked workers has been enacted as law. Long working hours are controversial issues because of conflicts between health, safety, work-life balance, and productivity. It is obvious that we need to continue research regarding the impact on worker health and the management of long working hours.
[Karoshi, death by overwork].
Nihon rinsho. Japanese journal of clinical medicine
Karoshi (death by overwork) is one of social medical terms, which used by survivors of victims who attacked with cardiovascular diseases such as stroke, myocardial infarction and sudden cardiac death. In Dec. 2000, Compensation Standard of cardiovascular diseases in Workers' Insurance was changed and admitted the relationship between chronic fatigue and cardiovascular attacks. As a result, compensation numbers of Karoshi attributed to three hundred and more from about 80 cases. The Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare thinks that most of Karoshi caused by long working hours continuing for several months, especially without payment, so that the Labour Standard Inspector Office requests to decrease overtime work more than 45 hours per month to firm administrators.
Overwork, stroke, and karoshi-death from overwork.
Acta neurologica Taiwanica
Karoshi, death from over-work, is usually the extreme result of acute cardiovascular events including stroke. Among 203 karoshi cases received worker compensation in Japan, sixty percent died of stroke. Karoshi is a term for social medicine originated form Japan. Literature reviews on karoshi found that long overtime at work, on duty in holidays, attending a new job with no family members around, and working at night shift are risk factors. Work stress increases secretion of catecholamines (epinephrine and norepinephrine) and cortisol which is associated with progression of atherosclerosis and increased risk of cardiovascular diseases and stroke. To avoid long working hours, stress management and treatment of hypertension, diabetes, and hyperlipidemia are key issues in preventing karoshi caused by stroke.
Karoshi May Be a Consequence of Overwork-Related Malignant Arrhythmia.
Xiao Ning,Yang Bo-Fan,Shi Jing-Zhuo,Yu Yan-Geng,Zhang Fu,Miao Qi,Li Dong-Ri
Medical science monitor : international medical journal of experimental and clinical research
BACKGROUND Karoshi, which is sudden death associated with overwork, has become a serious problem in China. Many studies have examined the relationship between cardiovascular risks and karoshi, but there is little evidence that explains the exact mechanism by which overwork induces sudden death. In these cases, there are few obvious positive findings from forensic autopsies except for histories of overwork prior to death. Therefore, we assume that abnormalities, such as cardiac arrhythmia, rather than organic changes are the cause of karoshi. MATERIAL AND METHODS In the present study, the forced swim test (FST) was used to establish models of overwork. The myocardial tissues of SD rats taking FST (1 h per day, for 30 consecutive days) were collected. The arrhythmia-related molecule CX43 as well as its upstream regulation molecule Cav-1 and cSrc were tested by Western blot (WB) and immunohistochemistry (IHC). HE staining and Masson's staining were performed in the myocardium tissue section. RESULTS We observed downregulation of caveolin-1 (Cav1) followed by cSrc activation, resulting in the decrease of connexin43 (Cx43) levels in overwork models. Myocardial interstitial fibrosis, which is associated with electrophysiological aberrances that result in arrhythmia, was also found in the overwork models. CONCLUSIONS These data provide a mechanistic explanation for the speculated link between karoshi and cardiac arrhythmias.
The Concept, Status Quo and Forensic Pathology of Karoshi.
Yang B F,Shi J Z,Li Q J,Xia L C,Zhang F,Yu Y G,Xiao N,Li D R
Fa yi xue za zhi
Abstract:"Karoshi" originates from Japan's economic take-off period in the 1960s and 1970s. It is generally believed that overwork lead to the accumulation of fatigue, which triggers the outbreak of potential diseases, and results in sudden death. Karoshi causes great harm to both the community and families because it occurs primarily in 30 to 60 year old young adults. Japan put Karoshi into the category of industrial injury for the first time in 2001 and started to undertake a series of studies in the sociological and pathological fields. However, there is a tremendous gap in the forensic pathological diagnosis domain. In China, research on Karoshi started from the 1990s and is closely related to the reform and opening up policy as well as economic development. According to the incomplete statistics, 600 thousand people die from overwork each year in China, the highest in the world. Karoshi has become one of the most serious social problems in China at the present stage, thus a systematic study in the sociology and forensic pathology fields is urgently required. This paper summarizes the past and present status of Karoshi, and puts forward the problems that need attention during the judicial expertise of Karoshi from forensic pathology perspective.