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Journal of Occupational & Environmental Medicine:
doi: 10.1097/JOM.0000000000000026
Original Articles

Work Stress and the Long QT Syndrome: High Job Strain and Effort–Reward Imbalance at Work Associated With Arrhythmic Risk in the Long QT Syndrome

Hintsa, Taina PhD; Määttänen, I. MSc; Hintsanen, M. PhD; Swan, H. PhD; Toivonen, L.; Kontula, K.; Keltikangas-Järvinen, L.

Continued Medical Education
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Abstract

Objectives: To examine whether work stress is associated with a symptomatic status of the long QT syndrome (LQTS).

Methods: The sample comprised 173 KCNQ1, KCNH2, or SCN5A gene mutation carriers (70 symptomatic) and control groups of 203 relatives without the family mutation, and of 1209 population-based young Finns control subjects. Work stress was assessed using the Job Content Questionnaire and Occupational Stress Questionnaire.

Results: We found an association between the occurrence of symptoms in the LQTS and high work stress, higher job demands/effort, lower job control, and lower rewards compared with control subjects. We also found that symptomatic LQTS mutation carriers had higher work stress than asymptomatic LQTS mutation carriers.

Conclusions: Higher work stress is related to arrhythmic risk in the LQTS. It may be useful to incorporate assessment of work conditions and stress interventions into management of high-risk patients.

Copyright © 2013 by the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine

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