Comparative total mortality in 25 years in Italian and Greek middle aged rural men.
STUDY OBJECTIVE: Mortality over 25 years has been low in the Italian and very low in the Greek cohorts of the Seven Countries Study; factors responsible for this particularity were studied in detail. PARTICIPANTS AND SETTINGS: 1712 Italian and 1215 Greek men, aged 40-59 years, cohorts of the Seven Countries Study, representing over 95% of the populations in designated rural areas. DESIGN: Entry (1960-61) data included age, systolic blood pressure (SBP), smoking habits, total serum cholesterol, body mass index (BMI), arm circumference, vital capacity (VC), and forced expiratory volume in 3/4 seconds (FEV); the same data were obtained 10 years later. Multivariate Cox analysis was performed with all causes death in 25 years as end point. MAIN RESULTS: Italian men had higher entry levels of SBP, arm circumference, BMI, and VC; Greek men had higher cholesterol levels, smoking habits, and FEV. Mortality of Italian men was higher throughout; at 25 years cumulative mortality was 48.3% and 35.3% respectively. Coronary heart disease and stroke mortality increased fivefold in Italy and 10-fold in Greece between years 10 and 25. The only risk factor with a significantly higher contribution to mortality in Italian men was cholesterol. However, differences in entry SBP (higher in Italy) and FEV (higher in Greece) accounted for, according to the Lee method, 75% of the differential mortality between the two populations. At 10 years increases in SBP, cholesterol, BMI, and decreases in smoking habits, VC, FEV, and arm circumference had occurred (deltas). SBP increased more and FEV and VC decreased more in Italy than in Greece. Deltas, fed stepwise in the original model for the prediction of 10 to 25 years mortality, were significant for SBP, smoking, arm circumference, and VC in Greece, and for SBP and VC in Italy. CONCLUSION: Higher mortality in Italian men is related to stronger positive effects of entry SBP and weaker negative (protective) effects of FEV; in addition 10 year increases in SBP are higher and 10 year decreases in FEV are larger in Italy. Unaccounted factors, however, related to, for example, differences in the diet, may also have contributed to the differential mortality of these two Mediterranean populations. (+info)
Double blind, cluster randomised trial of low dose supplementation with vitamin A or beta carotene on mortality related to pregnancy in Nepal. The NNIPS-2 Study Group.
OBJECTIVE: To assess the impact on mortality related to pregnancy of supplementing women of reproductive age each week with a recommended dietary allowance of vitamin A, either preformed or as beta carotene. DESIGN: Double blind, cluster randomised, placebo controlled field trial. SETTING: Rural southeast central plains of Nepal (Sarlahi district). SUBJECTS: 44 646 married women, of whom 20 119 became pregnant 22 189 times. INTERVENTION: 270 wards randomised to 3 groups of 90 each for women to receive weekly a single oral supplement of placebo, vitamin A (7000 micrograms retinol equivalents) or beta carotene (42 mg, or 7000 micrograms retinol equivalents) for over 31/2 years. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: All cause mortality in women during pregnancy up to 12 weeks post partum (pregnancy related mortality) and mortality during pregnancy to 6 weeks postpartum, excluding deaths apparently related to injury (maternal mortality). RESULTS: Mortality related to pregnancy in the placebo, vitamin A, and beta carotene groups was 704, 426, and 361 deaths per 100 000 pregnancies, yielding relative risks (95% confidence intervals) of 0. 60 (0.37 to 0.97) and 0.51 (0.30 to 0.86). This represented reductions of 40% (P<0.04) and 49% (P<0.01) among those who received vitamin A and beta carotene. Combined, vitamin A or beta carotene lowered mortality by 44% (0.56 (0.37 to 0.84), P<0.005) and reduced the maternal mortality ratio from 645 to 385 deaths per 100 000 live births, or by 40% (P<0.02). Differences in cause of death could not be reliably distinguished between supplemented and placebo groups. CONCLUSION: Supplementation of women with either vitamin A or beta carotene at recommended dietary amounts during childbearing years can lower mortality related to pregnancy in rural, undernourished populations of south Asia. (+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)
Prevalence of intestinal parasite infections with special reference to Entamoeba histolytica on the island of Bioko (Equatorial Guinea).
The prevalence of intestinal parasitic infections was assessed (1993 through 1995) among two different groups of persons on the island of Bioko, Equatorial Guinea. In the first group, parasitologic examinations were performed on stool specimens from a household-based sample of 557 dwellers from the rural area of the island. In the second group, 1,633 inpatients and outpatients at the General Hospital of Malabo (the capital of the country) were studied. All age groups were represented in both groups. The average prevalence of the most common protozoan and helminthic intestinal infections in rural and urban areas, respectively, was as follows: Entamoeba histolytica/E. dispar (14.9% and 32.7%, respectively), Giardia lamblia (7.2% and 8.6%), Ascaris lumbricoides (45.8% and 31.4%), and Trichuris trichiura (25.7% and 36.4%). Seventy-nine sera from patients with amebic liver abscess (suspected by ultrasonography) were studied by an immunohemagglutination assay, with 44 (56%) showing anti-E. histolytica titers > or = 1:32. Of these 79 sera, 71 were studied by an enzyme immunoassay, 86% of which were positive with titers > or = 1:64. This study showed that parasitic infections in Equatorial Guinea represent a major health problem. (+info)
A case-control study of risk factors for Haemophilus influenzae type B disease in Navajo children.
To understand the potential risk factors and protective factors for invasive Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) disease, we conducted a case-control study among Navajo children less than two years of age resident on the Navajo Nation. We analyzed household interview data for 60 cases that occurred between August 1988 and February 1991, and for 116 controls matched by age, gender, and geographic location. The Hib vaccine recipients were excluded from the analyses. Conditional logistic regression models were fit to examine many variables relating to social and environmental conditions. Risk factors determined to be important were never breast fed (odds ratio [OR] = 3.55, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.52, 8.26), shared care with more than one child less than two years of age (OR = 2.32, 95% CI = 0.91, 5.96); wood heating (OR = 2.14, 95% CI = 0.91, 5.05); rodents in the home (OR = 8.18, 95% CI = 0.83, 80.7); and any livestock near the home (OR = 2.18, 95% CI = 0.94, 5.04). (+info)
Variation by body mass index and age in waist-to-hip ratio associations with glycemic status in an aboriginal population at risk for type 2 diabetes in British Columbia, Canada.
BACKGROUND: It is unclear whether obesity and age modify or confound relations between abdominal adiposity and metabolic risk factors for type 2 diabetes. OBJECTIVE: Our objective was assess the consistency of relations between abdominal adiposity and glycemic variables across discrete categories of obesity and age. DESIGN: We performed a stratified analysis of prevalence data from a rural screening initiative in British Columbia, Canada. Subjects were Salishan Indians, all healthy relatives of individuals with type 2 diabetes [n = 151; age: 18-80 y; body mass index (BMI, in kg/m2): 17.0-48.2]. We measured waist-to-hip ratio (WHR) (2 categories); insulin, glycated hemoglobin (Hb A1c), and 2-h glucose concentrations (2 categories); and BMI (4 categories). BMI and age-specific odds ratios (ORs) and 95% CIs were calculated. RESULTS: WHR-glycemic variable relations were not consistent across BMI and age strata. Risks associated with high WHR were: for persons with BMIs from 25 to 29, elevated insulin (OR: 6.71; 95% CI: 1.41, 34.11) and Hb A1c (OR: 16.23; 95% CI: 2.04, 101.73) concentrations; for persons aged 18-34 y, elevated insulin concentrations [OR: indeterminate (+infinity); 95% CI: 1.89, +infinity]; and, for persons aged 35-49 y, elevated Hb A1c (OR: +infinity; 95% CI: 3.17, +infinity) and 2-h glucose (OR: 9.15; 95% CI: 1.74, 59.91) concentrations. CONCLUSIONS: WHR discriminates risk of type 2 diabetes in overweight but not obese individuals. Abdominal adiposity is associated with elevated insulin concentrations in younger age groups and with impaired glucose control in middle-aged groups, suggesting metabolic staging by age on a continuum from insulin resistance to impaired glucose tolerance. (+info)
What's driving an epidemic? The spread of syphilis along an interstate highway in rural North Carolina.
OBJECTIVES: The purpose of this study was to determine whether county syphilis rates were increased along Interstate Highway 95 (I-95) in North Carolina during a recent epidemic. METHODS: Ecological data on syphilis cases demographic data, highway data, and drug activity data were used to conduct a cross-sectional and longitudinal study of North Carolina countries from 1985 to 1994. Crude and adjusted incidence rate ratios (IRRs) were determined by means of standard and longitudinal Poisson regression models adjusted for sociodemographic factors and drug use. RESULTS: Ten-year syphilis rates in I-95 counties greatly exceeded rates in non-I-95 counties (38 vs 16 cases per 100,000 persons) and remained higher after adjustment for race, age, sex, poverty, large cities, and drug activity (adjusted IRR = 2.05, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.84, 2.28). Syphilis rates were stable until 1989, when rates increased sharply in I-95 counties but remained stable in non-I-95 counties. Increased drug activity in I-95 counties preceded the rise in syphilis cases. CONCLUSIONS: A better understanding of the relationship between high-ways and the spread of sexually transmitted diseases may guide future prevention interventions. (+info)
Standardized comparison of glucose intolerance in west African-origin populations of rural and urban Cameroon, Jamaica, and Caribbean migrants to Britain.
OBJECTIVE: To compare the prevalence of glucose intolerance in genetically similar African-origin populations within Cameroon and from Jamaica and Britain. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS: Subjects studied were from rural and urban Cameroon or from Jamaica, or were Caribbean migrants, mainly Jamaican, living in Manchester, England. Sampling bases included a local census of adults aged 25-74 years in Cameroon, districts statistically representative in Jamaica, and population registers in Manchester. African-Caribbean ethnicity required three grandparents of this ethnicity. Diabetes was defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) 1985 criteria using a 75-g oral glucose tolerance test (2-h > or = 11.1 mmol/l or hypoglycemic treatment) and by the new American Diabetes Association criteria (fasting glucose > or = 7.0 mmol/l or hypoglycemic treatment). RESULTS: For men, mean BMIs were greatest in urban Cameroon and Manchester (25-27 kg/m2); in women, these were similarly high in urban Cameroon and Jamaica and highest in Manchester (27-28 kg/m2). The age-standardized diabetes prevalence using WHO criteria was 0.8% in rural Cameroon, 2.0% in urban Cameroon, 8.5% in Jamaica, and 14.6% in Manchester, with no difference between sexes (men: 1.1%, 1.0%, 6.5%, 15.3%, women: 0.5%, 2.8%, 10.6%, 14.0%), all tests for trend P < 0.001. Impaired glucose tolerance was more frequent in Jamaica. CONCLUSIONS: The transition in glucose intolerance from Cameroon to Jamaica and Britain suggests that environment determines diabetes prevalence in these populations of similar genetic origin. (+info)