Body mass decrease after initial gain following smoking cessation.
BACKGROUND: Although smoking cessation is strongly associated with subsequent weight gain, it is not clear whether the initial gain in weight after smoking cessation remains over time. METHOD: Cross-sectional analyses were made, using data from periodic health examinations for workers, on the relationship between body mass index (BMI) and the length of smoking cessation. In addition, linear regression coefficients of BMI on the length of cessation were estimated according to alcohol intake and sport activity, to examine the modifying effect of these factors on the weight of former smokers. RESULTS: Means of BMI were 23.1 kg/m2, 23.3 kg/m2, 23.6 kg/m2 for light/medium smokers, heavy smokers and never smokers, respectively. Among former smokers who had smoked > or = 25 cigarettes a day, odds ratio (OR) of BMI >25 kg/m2 were 1.88 (95% confidence interval [CI] : 1.05-3.35), 1.32 (95% CI : 0.74-2.34), 0.66 (95% CI: 0.33-1.31) for those with 2-4 years, 5-7 years, and 8-10 years of smoking cessation, respectively. The corresponding OR among those who previously consumed <25 cigarettes a day were 1.06 (95% CI: 0.58-1.94), 1.00 (95% CI: 0.58-1.71), and 1.49 (95% CI: 0.95-2.32). CONCLUSIONS: The results suggest that although heavy smokers may experience large weight gain and weigh more than never smokers in the few years after smoking cessation, they thereafter lose weight to the never smoker level, while light and moderate smokers gain weight up to the never smoker level without any excess after smoking cessation. (+info)
Relation between obesity and breast cancer in young women.
This study was conducted to assess the relation between body size and risk of breast cancer among young women. A case-control study was conducted among women aged 21-45 years living in three counties in Washington State. Cases were women born after 1944 with invasive or in situ breast cancer that was diagnosed between January 1, 1983, and April 30, 1990. Controls were selected using random digit dialing and were frequency-matched to cases on the basis of age and county of residence. Interviews took place between 1986 and 1992. Body size was evaluated using indices from several different time periods. After adjustment for confounders, a decreased risk of breast cancer was found for women in the highest quintile of body mass index (weight (kg)/height (m)2) as compared with the lowest quintile (for maximum lifetime body mass index, odds ratio = 0.69, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.51-0.94). Age modified the relation between body size and risk of breast cancer. The odds ratio for women in the highest quintile of maximum body mass index who were aged 21-35 years was 0.29 (95% CI 0.16-0.55), as compared with an odds ratio of 1.5 for women aged 36-45 years (95% CI 0.9-2.5) (p for interaction = 0.003). This study supports prior research showing a decreased risk of breast cancer associated with increased body size among premenopausal or young women. More detailed analysis in this study found a strong effect that was limited to the youngest age group (< or = 35 years). (+info)
Risk factors for injuries and other health problems sustained in a marathon.
OBJECTIVES: To identify risk factors for injuries and other health problems occurring during or immediately after participation in a marathon. METHODS: A prospective cohort study was undertaken of participants in the 1993 Auckland Citibank marathon. Demographic data, information on running experience, training and injuries, and information on other lifestyle factors were obtained from participants before the race using an interviewer-administered questionnaire. Information on injuries and other health problems sustained during or immediately after the marathon were obtained by a self administered questionnaire. Logistic regression analyses were undertaken to identify significant risk factors for health problems. RESULTS: This study, one of only a few controlled epidemiological studies that have been undertaken of running injuries, has identified a number of risk factors for injuries and other health problems sustained in a marathon. Men were at increased risk of hamstring and calf problems, whereas women were at increased risk of hip problems. Participation in a marathon for the first time, participation in other sports, illness in the two weeks before the marathon, current use of medication, and drinking alcohol once a month or more, were associated with increased self reported risks of problems. While increased training seemed to increase the risk of front thigh and hamstring problems, it may decrease the risk of knee problems. There are significant but complex relations between age and risk of injury or health problem. CONCLUSIONS: This study has identified certain high risk subjects and risk factors for injuries and other health problems sustained in a marathon. In particular, subjects who have recently been unwell or are taking medication should weigh up carefully the pros and cons of participating. (+info)
Statistical inference by confidence intervals: issues of interpretation and utilization.
This article examines the role of the confidence interval (CI) in statistical inference and its advantages over conventional hypothesis testing, particularly when data are applied in the context of clinical practice. A CI provides a range of population values with which a sample statistic is consistent at a given level of confidence (usually 95%). Conventional hypothesis testing serves to either reject or retain a null hypothesis. A CI, while also functioning as a hypothesis test, provides additional information on the variability of an observed sample statistic (ie, its precision) and on its probable relationship to the value of this statistic in the population from which the sample was drawn (ie, its accuracy). Thus, the CI focuses attention on the magnitude and the probability of a treatment or other effect. It thereby assists in determining the clinical usefulness and importance of, as well as the statistical significance of, findings. The CI is appropriate for both parametric and nonparametric analyses and for both individual studies and aggregated data in meta-analyses. It is recommended that, when inferential statistical analysis is performed, CIs should accompany point estimates and conventional hypothesis tests wherever possible. (+info)
Where do people go for treatment of sexually transmitted diseases?
CONTEXT: Major public health resources are devoted to the prevention of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) through public STD clinics. However, little is known about where people actually receive treatment for STDs. METHODS: As part of the National Health and Social Life Survey, household interviews were performed from February to September 1992 with 3,432 persons aged 18-59. Weighted population estimates and multinomial response methods were used to describe the prevalence of self-reported STDs and patterns of treatment utilization by persons who ever had a bacterial or viral STD. RESULTS: An estimated two million STDs were self-reported in the previous year, and 22 million 18-59-year-olds self-reported lifetime STDs. Bacterial STDs (gonorrhea, chlamydia, nongonococcal urethritis, pelvic inflammatory disease and syphilis) were more common than viral STDs (genital herpes, genital warts, hepatitis and HIV). Genital warts were the most commonly reported STD in the past year, while gonorrhea was the most common ever-reported STD. Almost half of all respondents who had ever had an STD had gone to a private practice for treatment (49%); in comparison, only 5% of respondents had sought treatment at an STD clinic. Respondents with a bacterial STD were seven times more likely to report going to an STD clinic than were respondents with a viral STD--except for chlamydia, which was more likely to be treated at family planning clinics. Men were significantly more likely than women to go to an STD clinic. Young, poor or black respondents were all more likely to use a family planning clinic for STD treatment than older, relatively wealthy or white respondents. Age, sexual history and geographic location did not predict particular types of treatment-seeking. CONCLUSIONS: The health care utilization patterns for STD treatment in the United States are complex. Specific disease diagnosis, gender, race and income status all affect where people will seek treatment. These factors need to be taken into account when STD prevention strategies are being developed. (+info)
Condom use and HIV risk behaviors among U.S. adults: data from a national survey.
CONTEXT: How much condom use among U.S. adults varies by type of partner or by risk behavior is unclear. Knowledge of such differentials would aid in evaluating the progress being made toward goals for levels of condom use as part of the Healthy People 2000 initiative. METHODS: Data were analyzed from the 1996 National Household Survey of Drug Abuse, an annual household-based probability sample of the noninstitutionalized population aged 12 and older that measures the use of illicit drugs, alcohol and tobacco. The personal behaviors module included 25 questions covering sexual activity in the past year, frequency of condom use in the past year, circumstances of the last sexual encounter and HIV testing. RESULTS: Sixty-two percent of adults reported using a condom at last intercourse outside of an ongoing relationship, while only 19% reported using condoms when the most recent intercourse occurred within a steady relationship. Within ongoing relationships, condom use was highest among respondents who were younger, black, of lower income and from large metropolitan areas. Forty percent of unmarried adults used a condom at last sex, compared with the health objective of 50% for the year 2000. Forty percent of injecting drug users used condoms at last intercourse, compared with the 60% condom use objective for high-risk individuals. Significantly, persons at increased risk for HIV because of their sexual behavior or drug use were not more likely to use condoms than were persons not at increased risk; only 22% used condoms during last intercourse within an ongoing relationship. CONCLUSIONS: Substantial progress has been made toward national goals for increasing condom use. The rates of condom use by individuals at high risk of HIV need to be increased, however, particularly condom use with a steady partner. (+info)
Computed radiography dual energy subtraction: performance evaluation when detecting low-contrast lung nodules in an anthropomorphic phantom.
A dedicated chest computed radiography (CR) system has an option of energy subtraction (ES) acquisition. Two imaging plates, rather than one, are separated by a copper filter to give a high-energy and low-energy image. This study compares the diagnostic accuracy of conventional computed radiography to that of ES obtained with two radiographic techniques. One soft tissue only image was obtained at the conventional CR technique (s = 254) and the second was obtained at twice the radiation exposure (s = 131) to reduce noise. An anthropomorphic phantom with superimposed low-contrast lung nodules was imaged 53 times for each radiographic technique. Fifteen images had no nodules; 38 images had a total of 90 nodules placed on the phantom. Three chest radiologists read the three sets of images in a receiver operating characteristic (ROC) study. Significant differences in Az were only found between (1) the higher exposure energy subtracted images and the conventional dose energy subtracted images (P = .095, 90% confidence), and (2) the conventional CR and the energy subtracted image obtained at the same technique (P = .024, 98% confidence). As a result of this study, energy subtracted images cannot be substituted for conventional CR images when detecting low-contrast nodules, even when twice the exposure is used to obtain them. (+info)
Cancer mortality in agricultural regions of Minnesota.
Because of its unique geology, Minnesota can be divided into four agricultural regions: south-central region one (corn, soybeans); west-central region two (wheat, corn, soybeans); northwest region three (wheat, sugar beets, potatoes); and northeast region four (forested and urban in character). Cancer mortality (1980-1989) in agricultural regions one, two, and three was compared to region four. Using data compiled by the National Center for Health Statistics, cancer mortality was summarized by 5-year age groups, sex, race, and county. Age-standardized mortality rate ratios were calculated for white males and females for all ages combined, and for children aged 0-14. Increased mortality rate ratios and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were observed for the following cancer sites: region one--lip (men), standardized rate ratio (SRR) = 2.70 (CI, 1.08-6.71); nasopharynx (women), SRR = 3.35 (CI, 1.20-9.31); region two--non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (women), SRR = 1.35 (CI, 1.09-1.66); and region three--prostate (men), SRR = 1.12 (CI, 1.00-1.26); thyroid (men), SRR = 2.95 (CI, 1.35-6.44); bone (men), SRR = 2.09 (CI, 1. 00-4.34); eye (women), SRR = 5.77 (CI, 1.90-17.50). Deficits of smoking-related cancers were noted. Excess cancers reported are consistent with earlier reports of agriculturally related cancers in the midwestern United States. However, reports on thyroid and bone cancer in association with agricultural pesticides are few in number. The highest use of fungicides occurs in region three. Ethylenebisdithiocarbamates, whose metabolite is a known cause of thyroid cancer in rats, are frequently applied. This report provides a rationale for evaluation of the carcinogenic potential of this suspect agent in humans. (+info)