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Job strain, stroke linked in men in Japan

  |   Jan. 13, 2009 at 10:00 PM
FUKUOKA, Japan, Jan. 13 (UPI) -- Japanese men in high-stress jobs appear to have an increased risk of stroke compared with men in less demanding positions, researchers say.

Dr. Akizumi Tsutsumi of the University of Occupational and Environmental Health in Fukuoka and colleagues studied 6,553 Japanese workers -- 3,190 men and 3,363 women, age 65 and younger -- who completed an initial questionnaire and physical examination from 1992 to 1995. The workers were tracked annually for an average of 11 years.

Over this time, 147 strokes occurred, including 91 in men and 56 in women. The stroke events occurred in seven men and 11 women with "low-strain" jobs, or low job demand and high job control; in 23 men and 15 women with "active" jobs, or high job demand and high job control; 33 men and 15 women with "passive" jobs, or low job demand and low job control and 28 men and 15 women with "high-strain" jobs, or high job demand and low job control.

The researchers found a two-fold increase in the risk of total stroke among men with job strain -- a combination of high job demand and low job control. Although women with high-strain jobs tended to have a higher risk of stroke than women with low-strain jobs, no statistically significant differences were found among women, the researchers said.

The findings are published in the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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