Respiratory symptoms and long-term risk of death from cardiovascular disease, cancer and other causes in Swedish men.
BACKGROUND: Depressed respiratory function and respiratory symptoms are associated with impaired survival. The present study was undertaken to assess the relation between respiratory symptoms and mortality from cardiovascular causes, cancer and all causes in a large population of middle-aged men. METHODS: Prospective population study of 6442 men aged 51-59 at baseline, free of clinical angina pectoris and prior myocardial infarction. RESULTS: During 16 years there were 1804 deaths (786 from cardiovascular disease, 608 from cancer, 103 from pulmonary disease and 307 from any other cause). Men with effort-related breathlessness had increased risk of dying from all of the examined diseases. After adjustment for age, smoking habit and other risk factors, the relative risk (RR) associated with breathlessness of dying from coronary disease was 1.43 (95% CI : 1.16-1.77), from stroke 1.77 (95% CI: 1.07-2.93), from any cardiovascular disease 1.48 (95% CI : 1.24-1.76), cancer 1.36 (95% CI : 1.11-1.67) and from any cause 1.62 (95% CI: 1.44-1.81). An independent effect of breathlessness on cardiovascular death, cancer death and mortality from all causes was found in life-time non-smokers, and also if men with chest pain not considered to be angina were excluded. An independent effect was also found if all deaths during the first half of the follow-up were excluded. Men with cough and phlegm, without breathlessness, also had an elevated risk of dying from cardiovascular disease and cancer, but after adjustment for smoking and other risk factors this was no longer significant. However, a slightly elevated independent risk of dying from any cause was found (RR = 1.18 [95% CI: 1.02-1.36]). CONCLUSION: A positive response to a simple question about effort related breathlessness predicted subsequent mortality from several causes during a follow-up period of 16 years, independently of smoking and other risk factors. (+info)
Socioeconomic inequalities and disability pension in middle-aged men.
BACKGROUND: The issue of inequalities in health has generated much discussion and socioeconomic status is considered an important variable in studies of health. It is frequently used in epidemiological studies, either as a possible risk factor or a confounder and the aim of this study was to analyse the relation between socioeconomic status and risk of disability pension. METHODS: Five complete birth year cohorts of middle-aged male residents in Malmo were invited to a health survey and 5782 with complete data constituted the cohort in this prospective study. Each subject was followed for approximately 11 years and nationwide Swedish data registers were used for surveillance. RESULTS: Among the 715 men (12%), granted disability pension during follow-up, three groups were distinguished. The cumulative incidence of disability pension among blue collar workers was 17% and among lower and higher level white collar workers, 11% and 6% respectively. With simultaneous adjustment for biological risk factors and job conditions, the relative risk for being granted a disability pension (using higher level white collar workers as reference) was 2.5 among blue collar workers and 1.6 among lower level white collar workers. CONCLUSIONS: Socioeconomic status, as defined by occupation, is a risk factor for being granted disability pension even after adjusting for work conditions and other risk factors for disease. (+info)
Oral contraceptive use: interview data versus pharmacy records.
BACKGROUND: If women tend to forget and underreport their past oral contraceptive (OC) use, but the recall among cases is enhanced by the presence of disease, recall bias may explain some reported health effects of OC use. METHODS: Two different sources of information on lifetime OC use were compared for 427 (84%) of a community-based sample of 511 women aged 20-34: (i) structured interviews, using a life event calendar and picture display as memory aids, and (ii) a register of all prescriptions dispensed by pharmacies in the county since 1970. RESULTS: Interview data and pharmacy records showed high levels of agreement for any OC use, current use, time since first and last use, total duration of use, and for duration of use in different 'time windows'. But there was a tendency to under-report specific kinds of OC used in the past. CONCLUSION: Underreporting of OC use among non-cases would usually introduce little or no bias (as compared to pharmacy records) for this kind of interview and women. However, it may be preferable to use interviews for current OC use, and pharmacy records for specific kinds of OC used in the past. (+info)
Economic consequences of the progression of rheumatoid arthritis in Sweden.
OBJECTIVE: To develop a simulation model for analysis of the cost-effectiveness of treatments that affect the progression of rheumatoid arthritis (RA). METHODS: The Markov model was developed on the basis of a Swedish cohort of 116 patients with early RA who were followed up for 5 years. The majority of patients had American College of Rheumatology (ACR) functional class II disease, and Markov states indicating disease severity were defined based on Health Assessment Questionnaire (HAQ) scores. Costs were calculated from data on resource utilization and patients' work capacity. Utilities (preference weights for health states) were assessed using the EQ-5D (EuroQol) questionnaire. Hypothetical treatment interventions were simulated to illustrate the model. RESULTS: The cohort distribution among the 6 Markov states clearly showed the progression of the disease over 5 years of followup. Costs increased with increasing severity of the Markov states, and total costs over 5 years were higher for patients who were in more severe Markov states at diagnosis. Utilities correlated well with the Markov states, and the EQ-5D was able to discriminate between patients with different HAQ scores within ACR functional class II. CONCLUSION: The Markov model was able to assess disease progression and costs in RA. The model can therefore be a useful tool in calculating the cost-effectiveness of different interventions aimed at changing the progression of the disease. (+info)
Evidence of space-time clustering of childhood acute lymphoblastic leukaemia in Sweden.
We have examined 645 recorded cases of childhood acute lymphatic leukaemia (ALL) in Sweden during 1973-89 to identify space-time clustering by using the close-pair method of Knox. The records included date of birth and of diagnosis as well as addresses at birth and at diagnosis. There was a significant excess of case pairs close in date of birth and place of birth in the 5- to 15-year age group. (+info)
Immunologic proliferation marker Ki-S2 as prognostic indicator for lymph node-negative breast cancer.
BACKGROUND: Proper treatment of lymph node-negative breast cancer depends on an accurate prognosis. To improve prognostic models for this disease, we evaluated whether an immunohistochemical marker for proliferating cells, Ki-S2 (a monoclonal antibody that binds to a 100-kd nuclear protein expressed in S, G2, and M phases of the cell cycle), is an accurate indicator of prognosis. METHODS: We studied 371 Swedish women with lymph node-negative breast cancer; the median follow-up time was 95 months. The fraction of tumor cells in S phase was assessed by flow cytometry, and tumor cell proliferation was measured immunohistochemically with the monoclonal antibodies Ki-S2 and Ki-S5 (directed against the nuclear antigen Ki-67). A combined prognostic index was calculated on the basis of the S-phase fraction, progesterone receptor content, and tumor size. RESULTS: In multivariate analyses that did or did not (263 and 332 observations, respectively) include the S-phase fraction and the combined prognostic index, the Ki-S2 labeling index (percentage of antibody-stained tumor cell nuclei) emerged as the most statistically significant predictor of overall survival, disease-specific survival, and disease-free survival (all two-sided P<.0001). In the risk group defined by a Ki-S2 labeling index of 10% or less, life expectancy was not statistically significantly different from that of age-matched women without breast cancer, whereas the group with a high Ki-S2 labeling index had an increased risk of mortality of up to 20-fold. CONCLUSIONS: Cellular proliferation is a major determinant of the biologic behavior of breast cancer. Prognosis is apparently best indicated by the percentage of cells in S through M phases of the cell cycle. Measurement of the Ki-S2 labeling index of a tumor sample may improve a clinician's ability to make an accurate prognosis and to identify patients with a low risk of recurrence who may not need adjuvant therapy. (+info)
Is there a relationship between abdominal aortic aneurysms and alpha1-antitrypsin deficiency (PiZ)?
OBJECTIVE: To determine if the frequency of alpha 1AT deficiency (PiZ) is increased in patients with abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA), and, to investigate whether aneurysmal stiffness and other clinical characteristics differ in AAA patients with and without alpha 1AT deficiency. METHODS: We identified alpha 1AT-deficient individuals by a monoclonal-antibody ELISA technique, in 102 consecutive patients with AAA. Positive ELISA samples were further phenotyped by isoelectric focusing to differentiate between the heterozygosity (PiZ) and homozygosity (PiZZ) state. Aneurysmal diameter and stiffness was measured using echotracking sonography and blood pressure measurements. RESULTS: The frequency of heterozygous alpha 1AT deficiency (PiZ) in patients with AAA was similar to that in the general population (6.8% and 4.7%, respectively, p > 0.3). The frequency of popliteal and femoral aneurysm was similar in male PiZ-carriers and non-carriers with AAA, as were age at diagnosis of AAA, aneurysmal diameter, aneurysmal stiffness, and presence of factors that may be associated with AAA (i.e. smoking, hypertension, diabetes mellitus, and family history of AAA). Occurrence of ischaemic heart disease was more frequent in male non-PiZ-carriers than in male PiZ-carriers with AAA (p = 0.03). CONCLUSIONS: The frequency of alpha 1AT deficiency (PiZ) was not increased in our series of patients with AAA and patients in whom the two disorders coexisted did not appear to have different clinical characteristics except for the lower occurrence of ischaemic heart disease among the PiZ-carriers. (+info)
Rotavirus G-type restriction, persistence, and herd type specificity in Swedish cattle herds.
G-typing of rotavirus strains enables the study of molecular epidemiology and gathering of information to promote disease prevention and control. Rotavirus strains in fecal specimens from neonatal calves in Swedish cattle herds were therefore characterized by using G1 to -4-, G6-, G8-, and G10-specific primers in reverse transcription (RT)-PCR. Fecal samples were collected from one dairy herd (herd A) for 4 consecutive years and from 41 beef and dairy herds (herd B) experiencing calf diarrhea outbreaks. Altogether, 1, 700 samples were analyzed by group A rotavirus enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, and 98 rotavirus-positive specimens were selected for G-typing by RT-PCR. The effect of herd type, time, geographic region, and clinical symptoms on the G-type distribution was evaluated. Altogether (herds A and B), G10 was found in 59 (60. 2%) fecal specimens, G6 was found in 30 (30.6%) specimens, G3 was found in 1 (1.0%) specimen, and G8 was found in 1 (1.0%) specimen. Seven (7.1%) fecal specimens were not typeable. Herd type specificity in the G-type distribution was demonstrated in the herds in herd B. In the 6 beef suckler herds, only G6 was detected, while rotavirus strains from the 35 dairy herds were predominantly (54%) G10. The G-type distribution was restricted in herds A and B. Twenty-nine of 30 strains from herd A were characterized as G10. In the vast majority of herds in herd B, a single G-type was identified. The serotype G10 and the electropherotype persisted over time in herd A. No characteristic G-type variation in the geographic distribution of cattle herds in herd B was obvious. There was no difference in the G-type distributions between the strains from clinically and subclinically rotavirus-infected calves in dairy herd A. The results from this study strongly indicate a pronounced stability in the rotavirus G-type distribution in Swedish cattle herds, which emphasizes the importance of continuous preventive measures for control of neonatal calf diarrhea. A future bovine rotavirus vaccine in Sweden should contain G10 and G6 strains. (+info)