Diabetes, Heart, and Cardiovascular Diseases News Chronicle.      Article 252

The Relationship Between A Job That Requires Standing And Congestive Heart Failure Or Heart Attack


A study by the researchers from Canada shows an increased risk of heart diseases such as congestive heart failure or heart attack with a job that requires standing most of the time when compared with a job that requires sitting most of the time.

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A relationship between a job that requires standing and congestive heart failure or heart attack.

The researchers came to the above conclusion after conducting a study on 7,300 participants. The study results accounted for risk factors such as the workplace and health issues. Investigators say that the study suggests that workplaces are supposed to prevent or modify the job that requires prolonged standing as they affect the heart health of an individual.

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The researchers have studied 7,300 workers, aged between 35 and 74 years, from Ontario, Canada. They are without any type of heart diseases at the beginning of the study. The study has followed them for 12 years. All the study participants were the participants of the 2003 Canadian Community Health Survey (CCHS), which has collected the information of the participants such as job title, personal factors, lifestyle, health conditions, and working conditions.

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The study has used the job title information in the CCHS survey records to assess the work of the participant that requires sitting, walking, standing, a combination of walking/standing/sitting or other body postures such as kneeling or bending. The researchers have estimated that nine percent of work requires predominantly standing and 37 percent of the work requires predominantly sitting.

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The researchers have linked CCHS records to the health records of the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences (ICES), Toronto, Canada, to identify the new cases of heart disease between 2003 to 2015. The following table shows the observed the development of new heart diseases in different groups after the study results accounted for factors such as age, gender, ethnicity, health issues (such as diabetes, hypertension or blood pressure, disorders), workplace factors and lifestyle issues (such as tobacco usage, body mass index BMI, drinking, exercise).

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Group New cases of heart diseases
Overall 3.4%
Men 4.6%
Women 2.1%
In people whose job was mostly standing 6.6%
In people whose job was mostly sitting 2.8%

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The researchers say that an individual may likely to get the highest risk reduction of heart diseases with a job that requires, standing and moving. An earlier study has suggested that the health risks to an individual with a job that requires prolonged sitting. The following table shows the health risks as indicated by the earlier study with a job that requires prolonged sitting and prolonged standing.

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Association with
prolonged standing
Association with
prolonged sitting
Back pain   x
Colon cancer   x
Heart disease x x
Joint pain   x
Leg swelling x  
Lower back pain x x
Nocturnal leg cramps x  
Poor circulation x x
Risk of blood clots x  
Strained neck   x
Varicose veins x  

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The leader of the investigation was Dr. Peter Smith, Senior Scientist, Institute for Work & Health (IWH), Toronto, Canada. The study was published on August 11, 2017, in the American Journal of Epidemiology. Title of the article was "The Relationship Between Occupational Standing and Sitting and Incident Heart Disease Over a 12-Year Period in Ontario, Canada."
DOI: doi.org/10.1093/aje/kwx298

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Varicose veins: Enlarged and twisted veins (commonly on the legs) are called varicose veins.


Published on September 22, 2017


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