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Comparison Between a Self-Reported Job Exposure Matrix (JEM CONSTANCES) to an Expertise-Based Job Exposure Matrix (MADE) for Biomechanical Exposures

Descatha, Alexis MD, PhD; Evanoff, Bradley A. MD; Andersen, Johann H. MD; Baca, Matthew MSc; Buckner-Petty, Skye MPH; Fadel, Marc MD; Ngabirano, Laure MPH; Roquelaure, Yves MD; Dale, Ann Marie PhD

Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine: September 2019 - Volume 61 - Issue 9 - p e399–e400
doi: 10.1097/JOM.0000000000001654
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
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Univ Angers, CHU (Universitary Hospital) Angers, Univ Rennes, Inserm, EHESP (École des hautes études en santé publique), Irset (Institut de recherche en santé, environnement et travail) - UMR_S 1085, Angers, France

Occupational Health Unit U1168 UMS011, Paris Hospital, Versailles University, Poincaré site, Garches, France

Division of General Medical Sciences, Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, St. Louis, Missouri

Occupational Medicine, University Research Clinic, Herning, Denmark

Division of General Medical Sciences, Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, St. Louis, Missouri

Occupational Health Unit U1168 UMS011, Paris Hospital, Versailles University, Poincaré site, Garches, France

Univ Angers, Univ Rennes, Inserm, EHESP, Irset (Institut de recherche en santé, environnement et travail) - UMR_S 1085, Angers, France

U1168, Inserm, Villejuif, France

Univ Angers, CHU (Universitary Hospital) Angers, Univ Rennes, Inserm, EHESP (École des hautes études en santé publique), Irset (Institut de recherche en santé, environnement et travail) - UMR_S 1085, Angers, France

Division of General Medical Sciences, Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, St. Louis, Missouri.

Address correspondence to: Alexis Descatha, MD, PhD, Univ Angers, CHU (Universitary Hospital) Angers, Univ Rennes, Inserm, EHESP (École des hautes études en santé publique), Irset (Institut de recherche en santé, environnement et travail) - UMR_S 1085, F-49000 Angers, France; Occupational Health Unit U1168 UMS011, Paris Hospital, Versailles University, Poincaré site, F92380 Garches, France (alexis.descatha@inserm.fr).

All authors have participated significantly.

The authors report no conflicts of interest. They are paid by their institutions (and AD is editor in chief of Archives des maladies professionnelles et de l’environnement).

Readers are invited to submit letters for publication in this department. Submit letters online at http://joem.edmgr.com. Choose “Submit New Manuscript.” A signed copyright assignment and financial disclosure form must be submitted with the letter. Form available at http://www.joem.org under Author and Reviewer information.

To the Editor:

Job exposure matrices are becoming more and more widely used,1 including use for estimation of biomechanical exposures.2 In the context of providing exposure data available for international research, an international team created an employment exposure matrix from the first available data from the Constances cohort, called “JEM Constances.”3 As part of ongoing efforts to compare different JEMs,4 we compared similar exposure variables from JEM Constances to those assigned in a JEM used for public health purposes in the same country, the French “MADE” (“Matrice Associant Difficultés physiques au travail et Emploi,” French for “difficult physical conditions and job matrix”).5,6 We studied the correlation and the agreement of exposure estimates for different job titles between these two matrices.

Briefly, the Constances cohort created a JEM based on self-reported exposures to 27 different biomechanical factors at the level of the job, using the French “professions et catégories socioprofessionnelles (PCS) 2003” national job codes.3 The MADE matrix coded 17 different exposures using consensus estimates from occupational health experts, using the same PCS codes.5 The relevant variables were crossed to obtain Spearman correlation coefficients for JEM Constances and MADE, using the PCS 2003 code as a unit and using the subject by applying the two matrices on available data on Constances cohort. Three categories for variables of both JEM Constances and MADE were also obtained based on the tertiles of the distribution using Constances cohort. Thus, a calculation of a Kappa agreement was also performed with similar units.

The results on the selected variables are fairly good (Table 1) except for exposures to the neck and to work in cold environment (less than 10 °C), where some coefficients were lower than 0.5.

TABLE 1

TABLE 1

These results confirm that a matrix based on a self-reported assessment exposure matrix and one based on expert estimates of exposure provide similar overall results. Although the statistical analyses were simple, using only an overall evaluation of correlation and agreement between the two approaches, the demonstration of broadly similar results using two different exposure methods may aid the comparison of studies using different exposure methods.

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Acknowledgments

This study was supported by research funding from the American National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH R01OH011076). The French CONSTANCES Cohort is supported by the French National Research Agency (ANR-11-INBS-0002), Caisse Nationale d’Assurance Maladie des travailleurs salariés-CNAMTS, and is funded by the Institut de Recherche en Santé Publique/Institut Thématique Santé Publique, and the following sponsors: Ministère de la santé et des sports, Ministère délégué à la recherche, Institut national de la santé et de la recherche médicale, Institut national du cancer et Caisse nationale de solidarité pour l’autonomie, as well as Institute for research in public health (IReSP, CapaciT project).

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REFERENCES

1. Siemiatycki J, Lavoué J. Availability of a New Job-Exposure Matrix (CANJEM) for epidemiologic and occupational medicine purposes. J Occup Environ Med 2018; 60:e324–e328.
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5. Descatha A, Despréaux T, Petit A, et al. [Development of a French Job exposure matrix “MADE” for biomechanical exposure evaluation]. Santé Publique 2018; 30:333–337.
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