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Dose–Response Relation Between Work Hours and Cardiovascular Disease Risk: Findings From the Panel Study of Income Dynamics

Conway, Sadie H. PhD; Pompeii, Lisa A. PhD; Roberts, Robert E. PhD; Follis, Jack L. PhD; Gimeno, David PhD

Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine: March 2016 - Volume 58 - Issue 3 - p 221–226
doi: 10.1097/JOM.0000000000000654

Objectives: The aim of this study was to examine the presence of a dose–response relationship between work hours and incident cardiovascular disease (CVD) in a representative sample of U.S. workers.

Methods: A retrospective cohort study of 1926 individuals from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics (1986 to 2011) employed for at least 10 years. Restricted cubic spline regression was used to estimate the dose–response relationship of work hours with CVD.

Results: A dose–response relationship was observed in which an average workweek of 46 hours or more for at least 10 years was associated with an increased risk of CVD. Compared with working 45 hours per week, working an additional 10 hours per week or more for at least 10 years increased CVD risk by at least 16%.

Conclusion: Working more than 45 work hours per week for at least 10 years may be an independent risk factor for CVD.

University of Texas Health Science Center, School of Public Health, Houston (Drs Conway, Pompeii); University of Texas Health Science Center, School of Public Health, San Antonio (Drs Roberts, Gimeno); and University of St. Thomas, Houston, Texas (Dr Follis).

Address correspondence to: Sadie H. Conway, PhD, The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, School of Public Health, 1200 Pressler Street, RAS W610, Houston, TX 77030 (

Funding for this project was received from the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (Grant No. 5T42OH008421).

Authors Conway, Pompeii, Roberts, Follis, and Gimeno have no relationships/conditions/circumstances that present potential conflict of interest.

The JOEM editorial board and planners have no financial interest related to this research.

Copyright © 2016 by the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine