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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health, Volume 15, Issue 5 (May 2018)

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Cover Story (view full-size image) Food safety is a signifcant issue all over the world and should be treated as a priority. Every [...] Read more.
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Open AccessCommunication From Evidence-Based Research to Practice-Based Evidence: Disseminating a Web-Based Computer-Tailored Workplace Sitting Intervention through a Health Promotion Organisation
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1049; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051049
Received: 10 April 2018 / Revised: 17 May 2018 / Accepted: 18 May 2018 / Published: 22 May 2018
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Abstract
Prolonged sitting has been linked to adverse health outcomes; therefore, we developed and examined a web-based, computer-tailored workplace sitting intervention. As we had previously shown good effectiveness, the next stage was to conduct a dissemination study. This study reports on the dissemination efforts
[...] Read more.
Prolonged sitting has been linked to adverse health outcomes; therefore, we developed and examined a web-based, computer-tailored workplace sitting intervention. As we had previously shown good effectiveness, the next stage was to conduct a dissemination study. This study reports on the dissemination efforts of a health promotion organisation, associated costs, reach achieved, and attributes of the website users. The organisation systematically registered all the time and resources invested to promote the intervention. Website usage statistics (reach) and descriptive statistics (website users’ attributes) were also assessed. Online strategies (promotion on their homepage; sending e-mails, newsletters, Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn posts to professional partners) were the main dissemination methods. The total time investment was 25.6 h, which cost approximately 845 EUR in salaries. After sixteen months, 1599 adults had visited the website and 1500 (93.8%) completed the survey to receive personalized sitting advice. This sample was 38.3 ± 11.0 years, mainly female (76.9%), college/university educated (89.0%), highly sedentary (88.5% sat >8 h/day) and intending to change (93.0%) their sitting. Given the small time and money investment, these outcomes are positive and indicate the potential for wide-scale dissemination. However, more efforts are needed to reach men, non-college/university educated employees, and those not intending behavioural change. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sedentary Behaviour and Health)
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Open AccessArticle Reconciling the Entomological Hazard and Disease Risk in the Lyme Disease System
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1048; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051048
Received: 1 March 2018 / Revised: 9 May 2018 / Accepted: 16 May 2018 / Published: 22 May 2018
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Abstract
Lyme disease (LD) is a commonly cited model for the link between habitat loss and/or fragmentation and disease emergence, based in part on studies showing that forest patch size is negatively related to LD entomological risk. An equivalent relationship has not, however, been
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Lyme disease (LD) is a commonly cited model for the link between habitat loss and/or fragmentation and disease emergence, based in part on studies showing that forest patch size is negatively related to LD entomological risk. An equivalent relationship has not, however, been shown between patch size and LD incidence (LDI). Because entomological risk is measured at the patch scale, while LDI is generally assessed in relation to aggregate landscape statistics such as forest cover, we posit that the contribution of individual patches to human LD risk has not yet been directly evaluated. We design a model that directly links theoretical entomological risk at the patch scale to larger-scale epidemiological data. We evaluate its predictions for relative LD risk in artificial landscapes with varying composition and configuration, and test its ability to predict countywide LDI in a 12-county region of New York. On simulated landscapes, we find that the model predicts a unimodal relationship between LD incidence and forest cover, mean patch size, and mean minimum distance (a measure of isolation), and a protective effect for percolation probability (a measure of connectivity). In New York, risk indices generated by this model are significantly related to countywide LDI. The results suggest that the lack of concordance between entomological risk and LDI may be partially resolved by this style of model. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Prevalence and Risk Factors for Hepatitis B Virus Infection in Roma and Non-Roma People in Slovakia
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1047; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051047
Received: 21 March 2018 / Revised: 9 May 2018 / Accepted: 15 May 2018 / Published: 22 May 2018
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Abstract
Prevalence of Hepatitis B is relatively low in developed European countries. However specific subpopulations may exist within each country with markedly different Hepatitis B burden. Roma minority is very numerous in Slovakia and their lifestyle is completely different to non-Roma population. The aim
[...] Read more.
Prevalence of Hepatitis B is relatively low in developed European countries. However specific subpopulations may exist within each country with markedly different Hepatitis B burden. Roma minority is very numerous in Slovakia and their lifestyle is completely different to non-Roma population. The aim of this study is to map Hepatitis B prevalence in Roma and compare it to non-Roma population and to explore potential socio-economic and health related risk factors. Cross-sectional epidemiology study was performed in Slovakia that included randomly sampled Roma population and geographically corresponding random sampled non-Roma population. Comprehensive questionnaire about risk factors was administered and blood samples were drawn for Hepatitis B serology and virology tests. Altogether 855 participants were included. Global Hepatitis B surface Antigen (HBsAg) positivity rate was 7.7% (i.e., active Hepatitis B) and anti Hepatitis B core IgG antibody (antiHBcIgG) positivity rate was 34.6%. Roma population had significantly higher prevalence of Hepatitis B, both active chronic infection (12.4%; 95% Confidence Interval (CI) 9.58%–15.97% versus 2.8%; 95% CI 1.56%–4.91%; p < 0.0001) and antiHBcIgG positivity (52.8%; 95% CI 48.17%–57.44% versus 25.9%; 95% CI 12.56%–20.02%; p < 0.0001) Main risk factors for HBsAg positivity were Roma ethnicity, male sex and tattoo. Conclusion: There is a very high prevalence of Hepatitis B in Roma communities in Slovakia, with potential for grave medical consequences. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Roma Health)
Open AccessArticle Nursing Intervention Practices for Smoking Cessation: A Large Survey in Hong Kong
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1046; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051046
Received: 17 April 2018 / Revised: 16 May 2018 / Accepted: 17 May 2018 / Published: 22 May 2018
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Abstract
Previous studies have shown that nursing interventions are effective in helping people to stop smoking, but that the participation of nurses in tobacco control activities has been far from satisfactory. The primary objective of this study is to identify factors that encourage or
[...] Read more.
Previous studies have shown that nursing interventions are effective in helping people to stop smoking, but that the participation of nurses in tobacco control activities has been far from satisfactory. The primary objective of this study is to identify factors that encourage or discourage nurses from participating in providing smoking-cessation interventions to their clients, based on the 5 A’s (ask, advise, assess, assist, arrange) framework. A cross-sectional survey was conducted among 4413 nurses in Hong Kong from different clinical specialties. A logistics regression analysis found that predictors for the practicing of all of the 5 A’s are nurses who want to receive training in smoking-cessation interventions, those who have received such training, and those who are primarily working in a medical unit or in ambulatory/outpatient settings. The regression model also showed that attitude towards smoking cessation was positively associated with all of the 5 A’s. The results indicate a need to encourage and provide nurses with opportunities to receive training on smoking-cessation interventions. Strategies to persuade nurses to provide smoking-cessation interventions are also important, since nurses are motivated to perform smoking-cessation interventions when they feel a stronger sense of mission to control tobacco use. Full article
Open AccessArticle Association of Plasma Lipids and Polar Metabolites with Low Bone Mineral Density in Singaporean-Chinese Menopausal Women: A Pilot Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1045; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051045
Received: 12 March 2018 / Revised: 9 May 2018 / Accepted: 19 May 2018 / Published: 22 May 2018
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Abstract
The diagnosis of osteoporosis is mainly based on clinical examination and bone mineral density assessments. The present pilot study compares the plasma lipid and polar metabolite profiles in blood plasma of 95 Singaporean-Chinese (SC) menopausal women with normal and low bone mineral density
[...] Read more.
The diagnosis of osteoporosis is mainly based on clinical examination and bone mineral density assessments. The present pilot study compares the plasma lipid and polar metabolite profiles in blood plasma of 95 Singaporean-Chinese (SC) menopausal women with normal and low bone mineral density (BMD) using an untargeted metabolomic approach. The primary finding of this study was the association between lipids and femoral neck BMD in SC menopausal women. Twelve lipids were identified to be associated with low BMD by the orthogonal partial least squares (OPLS) model. Plasma concentrations of eight glycerophospholipid, glycerolipid, and sphingolipid species were significantly lower in menopausal women with low BMD but higher in two glycerophospholipid species (phosphatidylinositol and phosphatidic acid). Further, this study found no significant differences in plasma amino acid metabolites. However, trends for lower 4-aminobutyric acid, turanose, proline, aminopropionitrile, threonine, and methionine were found in women with low BMD. This pilot study identified associations between lipid metabolism and femoral neck BMD in SC women. Further studies are required on larger populations for evaluating the bone health effect of these compounds and their usefulness as clinical biomarkers for osteoporosis prediction in women. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Concepts in Women’s Bone Health)
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Open AccessArticle The Social Basis of Vaccine Questioning and Refusal: A Qualitative Study Employing Bourdieu’s Concepts of ‘Capitals’ and ‘Habitus’
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1044; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051044
Received: 28 March 2018 / Revised: 3 May 2018 / Accepted: 15 May 2018 / Published: 22 May 2018
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Abstract
This article is an in-depth analysis of the social nature of vaccine decision-making. It employs the sociological theory of Bourdieu and Ingram to consider how parents experience non-vaccination as a valued form of capital in specific communities, and how this can affect their
[...] Read more.
This article is an in-depth analysis of the social nature of vaccine decision-making. It employs the sociological theory of Bourdieu and Ingram to consider how parents experience non-vaccination as a valued form of capital in specific communities, and how this can affect their decision-making. Drawing on research conducted in two Australian cities, our qualitative analysis of new interview data shows that parents experience disjuncture and tugs towards ‘appropriate’ forms of vaccination behavior in their social networks, as these link to broader behaviors around food, school choices and birth practices. We show how differences emerge between the two cities based on study designs, such that we are able to see some parents at the center of groups valorizing their decisions, whilst others feel marginalized within their communities for their decisions to vaccinate. We draw on the work of philosopher Mark Navin to consider how all parents join epistemic communities that reward compliance and conformity with the status quo and consider what this means for interventions that seek to influence the flow of pro-vaccine information through vaccine-critical social groups. Full article
Open AccessArticle Effect of Sewage Irrigation on the CT-Measured Soil Pore Characteristics of a Clay Farmland in Northern China
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1043; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051043
Received: 2 March 2018 / Revised: 10 May 2018 / Accepted: 17 May 2018 / Published: 22 May 2018
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Abstract
Sewage irrigation has a strong influence on the physical, chemical, and biological properties of soil. However, the effects of sewage irrigation on the pore characteristics of soil are not well understood. This study compares the effects of sewage irrigation and groundwater irrigation on
[...] Read more.
Sewage irrigation has a strong influence on the physical, chemical, and biological properties of soil. However, the effects of sewage irrigation on the pore characteristics of soil are not well understood. This study compares the effects of sewage irrigation and groundwater irrigation on computed tomography (CT)-measured pore parameters and examines the relationships between CT-measured pore parameters and soil physicochemical and microbial properties. Intact soil cores were collected from S1 irrigated with sewage for 25 years, S2 irrigated with sewage for 52 years, and CK irrigated with groundwater. Various soil pore characteristics were determined, including the total pore number, macropore number (>1 mm diam.), coarse mesopore number (0.264–1 mm diam.), total porosity, macroporosity, coarse mesoporosity, and circularity. The results indicated that sewage irrigation significantly affected soil pore number and porosity. Compared with S1 and S2, CK exhibited a higher average total pore number (91), macropore number (40), coarse mesopore number (51), total porosity (2.08%), macroporosity (1.90%), and coarse mesoporosity (0.18%) throughout the 50–350 mm layer. At depths of 200–350 mm, S2 exhibited the lowest average total pore number (33), macropore number (13), coarse mesopore number (21), total porosity (0.42%), macroporosity (0.35%), and coarse mesoporosity (0.07%) among the three sites. In addition, the average pore numbers and porosity at depths of 200–350 mm decreased with increasing sewage irrigation time. There were significant positive correlations between pore features (including pore numbers and porosity) and soil properties (phosphorus content and fungi numbers). Our results suggest that decreased macropore numbers and macroporosity in the sewage-irrigated farmland may strongly intensify the accumulation of metals and nutrients in the upper layer. The findings of this study are useful for understanding the negative effects of sewage irrigation on soil pore structure and are critical for developing sustainable strategies in agriculture. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Environmental Science and Engineering)
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Open AccessReview Physical Activity Recommendations for Health and Beyond in Currently Inactive Populations
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1042; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051042
Received: 29 March 2018 / Revised: 21 May 2018 / Accepted: 21 May 2018 / Published: 22 May 2018
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Abstract
Widespread persistent inactivity makes continued efforts in physical activity promotion a persistent challenge. The precise content of physical activity recommendations is not broadly known, and there are concerns that the general messaging of the guidelines, including the recommendations to perform at least 150
[...] Read more.
Widespread persistent inactivity makes continued efforts in physical activity promotion a persistent challenge. The precise content of physical activity recommendations is not broadly known, and there are concerns that the general messaging of the guidelines, including the recommendations to perform at least 150 min of at least moderate intensity physical activity per week might seem unattainable for and even actually discourage currently inactive people. Here we show that there are a myriad of ways of being physically active, and provide (in part) out-of-the-box examples of evidence based, pragmatic, easily accessible physical activity regimes below 150 min and/or with lower than moderate intensity that yield meaningful health benefits for currently inactive people. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Health Behavior, Chronic Disease and Health Promotion)
Open AccessArticle Identifying the Driving Factors of Water Quality in a Sub-Watershed of the Republican River Basin, Kansas USA
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1041; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051041
Received: 7 April 2018 / Revised: 15 May 2018 / Accepted: 17 May 2018 / Published: 22 May 2018
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Abstract
Studies have shown that the agricultural expansion and land use changes in the Midwest of the U.S. are major drivers for increased nonpoint source pollution throughout the regional river systems. In this study, we empirically examined the relationship of planted area and production
[...] Read more.
Studies have shown that the agricultural expansion and land use changes in the Midwest of the U.S. are major drivers for increased nonpoint source pollution throughout the regional river systems. In this study, we empirically examined the relationship of planted area and production of three dominant crops with nitrate flux in the Republican River, Kansas, a sub-watershed of Mississippi River Basin. Our results show that land use in the region could not explain the observed changes in nitrate flux in the river. Instead, after including explanatory variables such as precipitation, growing degree days, and well water irrigation in the regression model we found that irrigation and spring precipitation could explain >85% of the variability in nitrate flux from 2000 to 2014. This suggests that changes in crop acreage and production alone cannot explain variability in nitrate flux. Future agricultural policy for the region should focus on controlling both the timing and amount of fertilizer applied to the field to reduce the potential leaching of excess fertilizer through spring time runoff and/or over-irrigation into nearby river systems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Non-Point Source Pollution and Environmental Assessment)
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Open AccessArticle Human Health Risk Assessment of Toxic Elements in Farmland Topsoil with Source Identification in Jilin Province, China
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1040; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051040
Received: 30 March 2018 / Revised: 16 May 2018 / Accepted: 17 May 2018 / Published: 22 May 2018
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Abstract
The presence of toxic elements in agricultural soils from anthropogenic activities is a potential threat to human health through the food chain. In this study, the concentration of toxic elements in 122 agricultural topsoil composite samples were determined in order to study the
[...] Read more.
The presence of toxic elements in agricultural soils from anthropogenic activities is a potential threat to human health through the food chain. In this study, the concentration of toxic elements in 122 agricultural topsoil composite samples were determined in order to study the current status, identify their sources and assess the level of pollution and human health risk. The results showed that the mean concentrations of Zn, Cu, Pb, Cd, Hg and As in the farmland topsoil were 21.72, 15.09, 36.08, 0.2451, 0.0378 and 4.957 mg·kg−1, respectively. The spatial distribution showed that the soils were mainly contaminated by Cd, Pb and Hg in midwest Jilin but by Cu and As in the east. According to the pollution index (Pi), Nemerow integrated pollution index (PN) and Geo-Accumulation Index (Igeo), Cd and Pb were the main pollutants in the soils. The occurrence of these elements was caused by anthropogenic activities and they were concentrated in the Songyuan-Changchun-Siping economic belt. There is limited non-carcinogenic and carcinogenic health risk to humans. Principal component analyses suggest the Pb, Cd and Hg soil contamination was mainly derived from anthropogenic activities in the Midwest, but all examined toxic elements in the east were mainly due to geogenic anomalies and came from atmospheric deposition. Full article
(This article belongs to the collection Environmental Risk Assessment)
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Open AccessArticle Map Changes and Theme Evolution in Work Hours: A Co-Word Analysis
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1039; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051039
Received: 13 April 2018 / Revised: 17 May 2018 / Accepted: 18 May 2018 / Published: 22 May 2018
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Abstract
(1) Background: Work hours are the basic carrier impacting employees’ work–life experience and organizational performance, and employees have greater anxiety in relation to work hours as new technology requires an increasingly faster work rhythm. However, scientific research on this topic lags far behind
[...] Read more.
(1) Background: Work hours are the basic carrier impacting employees’ work–life experience and organizational performance, and employees have greater anxiety in relation to work hours as new technology requires an increasingly faster work rhythm. However, scientific research on this topic lags far behind the practice, calling to attention the need for research on work hours from the perspective of historical evolution; (2) Methods: The Bibliometric method is used to analyze the 6364 articles and their contained 77 high-frequency keywords related to work hours from the Web of Science published between 1901 and 2017. Additionally, an individual–organization–society integrative perspective was adopted to describe the map changes and theme evolution of work hours; (3) Results and conclusions: The hot spots of research at the organizational level changed significantly around 1990, with the theme of “long work hours” becoming the core issue in recent years. Studies on the individual level have gradually moved from physiological aspects to the issues of burnout and psychological distress. Research topics related to the social level are somewhat loose, and mainly focused on work–life conflict areas. In addition, the cluster analysis based on the high-frequency keywords classifies six research types according to their research themes. Based on these findings, future trends are proposed to provide theoretical and practical reference for future studies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Emerging Issues in Occupational Safety and Health)
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Open AccessArticle The Impacts of Spatiotemporal Landscape Changes on Water Quality in Shenzhen, China
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1038; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051038
Received: 26 February 2018 / Revised: 3 May 2018 / Accepted: 19 May 2018 / Published: 22 May 2018
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Abstract
The urban landscape in China has changed rapidly over the past four decades, which has led to various environmental consequences, such as water quality degradation at the regional scale. To improve water restoration strategies and policies, this study assessed the relationship between water
[...] Read more.
The urban landscape in China has changed rapidly over the past four decades, which has led to various environmental consequences, such as water quality degradation at the regional scale. To improve water restoration strategies and policies, this study assessed the relationship between water quality and landscape change in Shenzhen, China, using panel regression analysis. The results show that decreases in natural and semi-natural landscape compositions have had significant negative effects on water quality. Landscape composition and configuration changes accounted for 39–58% of the variation in regional water quality degradation. Additionally, landscape fragmentation indices, such as patch density (PD) and the number of patches (NP), are important indicators of the drivers of water quality degradation. PD accounted for 2.03–5.44% of the variability in water quality, while NP accounted for −1.63% to −4.98% of the variability. These results indicate that reducing landscape fragmentation and enhancing natural landscape composition at the watershed scale are vital to improving regional water quality. The study findings suggest that urban landscape optimization is a promising strategy for mitigating urban water quality degradation, and the results can be used in policy making for the sustainable development of the hydrological environment in rapidly urbanizing areas. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Environmental Science and Engineering)
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Open AccessArticle Clinical Efficacy Associated with Enhanced Antioxidant Enzyme Activities of Silver Nanoparticles Biosynthesized Using Moringa oleifera Leaf Extract, Against Cutaneous Leishmaniasis in a Murine Model of Leishmania major
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1037; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051037
Received: 10 April 2018 / Revised: 15 May 2018 / Accepted: 15 May 2018 / Published: 22 May 2018
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Abstract
Leishmaniasis is one of the most significant vector-borne syndromes of individuals. This parasitic infection can be affected by many species of Leishmania, most of which are zoonotic. Natural products have made and are continuing to make important contributions to the search for new
[...] Read more.
Leishmaniasis is one of the most significant vector-borne syndromes of individuals. This parasitic infection can be affected by many species of Leishmania, most of which are zoonotic. Natural products have made and are continuing to make important contributions to the search for new antileishmanial agents. The use of plants in the production assembly of silver nanoparticles has drawn attention because of its rapid, eco-friendly, non-pathogenic, economical protocol and provides a single step technique for the biosynthetic process. Hence, we aimed to biosynthesize silver nanoparticles (Ag-NPs) using Moringa oleifera leaf extract and investigated the antileishmanial activity of these nanoparticles in a murine model of Leishmania major infection. A total of 50 mice were used and divided into five groups—healthy control, infected, infected mice treated with pentostam, infected mice treated with Ag-NPs and infected mice pretreated with Ag-NPs. In the present study, the leaf extract of the plant species Moringa oleifera was found to be a good source for the synthesis of silver nanoparticles, their formation being confirmed by color change and stability in solution. In the present murine model of Leishmania major infection, we found that oral treatment with silver nanoparticles biosynthesized using Moringa oleifera extract resulted in a significant reduction in the average size of leishmaniasis cutaneous lesions compared with untreated mice. Furthermore, the clinical efficacy of Moringa oleifera extract was associated with enhanced antioxidant enzyme activities. In conclusion, treatment with silver nanoparticles biosynthesized using Moringa oleifera extract has higher and faster clinical efficacy than standard pentavalent antimonial treatment, probably by boosting the endogenous antioxidant activity. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Home as a Place of Noise Control for the Elderly? A Cross-Sectional Study on Potential Mediating Effects and Associations between Road Traffic Noise Exposure, Access to a Quiet Side, Dwelling-Related Green and Noise Annoyance
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1036; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051036
Received: 25 April 2018 / Revised: 15 May 2018 / Accepted: 16 May 2018 / Published: 21 May 2018
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Abstract
Urban residents’ need to be in control of their home environment can be constrained by perceived uncontrollability of exposure to road traffic noise. Noise annoyance may indicate a psychological stress reaction due to this uncontrollability perception, thereby undermining the restoration process. Environmental resources,
[...] Read more.
Urban residents’ need to be in control of their home environment can be constrained by perceived uncontrollability of exposure to road traffic noise. Noise annoyance may indicate a psychological stress reaction due to this uncontrollability perception, thereby undermining the restoration process. Environmental resources, such as having access to a quiet side at home and dwelling-related green, may reduce noise annoyance both directly by shielding acoustically and indirectly by enhancing residents’ perceived noise control. We assessed the potential mediating role of perceived noise control in independent and joint associations of road traffic noise exposure (>65 dB Lden) and of an absent dwelling-related environmental resource (three indicators concerning quiet sides and one indicator concerning dwelling-related green) with noise annoyance. In our cross-sectional, questionnaire-based study on elderly urban citizens (N = 1812), we observed a statistically significant indirect effect of noise exposure on noise annoyance through perceived noise control (39%, 95%CI 26–55%). Statistical mediation between indicators of absent environmental resources and noise annoyance was weaker. The potential indirect effect was confirmed for combinations of noise exposure with each of the four indicators of an absent environmental resource. Our findings may call for mitigating noise levels while fostering quietness and green at residents’ homes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Noise-Related Annoyance)
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Open AccessArticle An Empirical Study Analyzing Job Productivity in Toxic Workplace Environments
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1035; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051035
Received: 24 March 2018 / Revised: 7 May 2018 / Accepted: 20 May 2018 / Published: 21 May 2018
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Abstract
Purpose: This empirical study aims to determine the effects of a toxic workplace environment, which can negatively impact the job productivity of an employee. Methodology: Three hundred questionnaires were randomly distributed among the staff members of seven private universities in Pakistan with a
[...] Read more.
Purpose: This empirical study aims to determine the effects of a toxic workplace environment, which can negatively impact the job productivity of an employee. Methodology: Three hundred questionnaires were randomly distributed among the staff members of seven private universities in Pakistan with a final response rate of 89%. For analysis purposes, AMOS 22 was used to study the direct and indirect effects of the toxic workplace environment on job productivity. Confirmatory Factor Analysis (CFA) was conducted to ensure the convergent and discriminant validity of the factors, while the Hayes mediation approach was used to verify the mediating role of job burnout between the four dimensions of toxic workplace environment and job productivity. A toxic workplace with multiple dimensions, such as workplace ostracism, workplace incivility, workplace harassment, and workplace bullying, was used in this study. Findings: By using the multiple statistical tools and techniques, it has been proven that ostracism, incivility, harassment, and bullying have direct negative significant effects on job productivity, while job burnout was shown to be a statistical significant mediator between the dimensions of a toxic workplace environment and job productivity. Finally, we concluded that organizations need to eradicate the factors of toxic workplace environments to ensure their prosperity and success. Practical Implications: This study encourages managers, leaders, and top management to adopt appropriate policies for enhancing employees’ productivity. Limitations: This study was conducted by using a cross-sectional research design. Future research aims to expand the study by using a longitudinal research design. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Workplace Health Promotion 2018)
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Open AccessArticle Relationship between Job Stress and 5-HT2A Receptor Polymorphisms on Self-Reported Sleep Quality in Physicians in Urumqi (Xinjiang, China): A Cross-Sectional Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1034; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051034
Received: 22 March 2018 / Revised: 15 May 2018 / Accepted: 18 May 2018 / Published: 21 May 2018
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Abstract
The serotonin receptor (5-HTR) plays a key role in sleep quality regulation. Job-related stress is an important factor that influences sleep quality. However, few reports on the interaction between 5-HTR2A polymorphisms and job stress, and how they may impact upon sleep quality are
[...] Read more.
The serotonin receptor (5-HTR) plays a key role in sleep quality regulation. Job-related stress is an important factor that influences sleep quality. However, few reports on the interaction between 5-HTR2A polymorphisms and job stress, and how they may impact upon sleep quality are available. Therefore this study investigated the effects of job stress, 5-HTR2A polymorphisms, and their interaction on sleep quality, in physicians. Using a two-stage stratified sampling method, 918 participants were initially invited to participate in the study. After screening for study inclusion and exclusion criteria, 504 subjects were eventually included in the study. Job stress and sleep quality were assessed using the Job Stress Survey (JSS) and Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI), respectively. The 5-HTR2A receptor gene polymorphisms T102C and -1438G/A of were determined using polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism. Job stress was significantly associated with sleep quality. High levels of job stress were linked to a higher risk of poor sleep quality compared to low or moderate levels [odds ratio (OR) = 2.909, 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.697–4.986]. High levels of stress may reduce subjects’ sleep quality, leading to an increase the likelihood of sleep disturbances and subsequent daytime dysfunction. The 5-HTR2A receptor gene polymorphism T102C was not significantly associated with sleep quality in this study, however, the -1438G/A polymorphism was significantly associated with sleep quality. The GG genotype of the -1438G/A polymorphism was linked to poorer sleep quality. When compared with subjects with low job-related stress levels×AG/AA genotype (OR = 2.106, 95% CI: 1.278–3.471), physicians with high job-related stress levels×GG genotype had a higher risk of experiencing poor sleep quality (OR = 13.400, 95% CI: 3.143–57.137). The findings of our study indicate that job stress and 5-HTR2A receptor gene polymorphisms are associated with sleep quality in physicians. Subjects with high job stress level or/and the -1438G/A GG genotype were more likely to report poor sleep quality, and furthermore, their combination effect on sleep quality was higher than their independent effects, so it may be suggested that job-related stress and genes have a cumulative effect on sleep quality; that is, stress can increase the risk of poor sleep quality, but this effect is worse in a group of people with specific gene polymorphisms. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sleep Health)
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Open AccessReview Tobacco Smoke Induces and Alters Immune Responses in the Lung Triggering Inflammation, Allergy, Asthma and Other Lung Diseases: A Mechanistic Review
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1033; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051033
Received: 16 April 2018 / Revised: 8 May 2018 / Accepted: 9 May 2018 / Published: 21 May 2018
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Abstract
Many studies have been undertaken to reveal how tobacco smoke skews immune responses contributing to the development of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and other lung diseases. Recently, environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) has been linked with asthma and allergic diseases in children. This
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Many studies have been undertaken to reveal how tobacco smoke skews immune responses contributing to the development of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and other lung diseases. Recently, environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) has been linked with asthma and allergic diseases in children. This review presents the most actual knowledge on exact molecular mechanisms responsible for the skewed inflammatory profile that aggravates inflammation, promotes infections, induces tissue damage, and may promote the development of allergy in individuals exposed to ETS. We demonstrate how the imbalance between oxidants and antioxidants resulting from exposure to tobacco smoke leads to oxidative stress, increased mucosal inflammation, and increased expression of inflammatory cytokines (such as interleukin (IL)-8, IL-6 and tumor necrosis factor α ([TNF]-α). Direct cellular effects of ETS on epithelial cells results in increased permeability, mucus overproduction, impaired mucociliary clearance, increased release of proinflammatory cytokines and chemokines, enhanced recruitment of macrophages and neutrophils and disturbed lymphocyte balance towards Th2. The plethora of presented phenomena fully justifies a restrictive policy aiming at limiting the domestic and public exposure to ETS. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environmental Tobacco Smoke: Exposure and Effects)
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Open AccessArticle A Novel Hybrid Data-Driven Model for Daily Land Surface Temperature Forecasting Using Long Short-Term Memory Neural Network Based on Ensemble Empirical Mode Decomposition
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1032; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051032
Received: 20 April 2018 / Revised: 15 May 2018 / Accepted: 16 May 2018 / Published: 21 May 2018
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Abstract
Daily land surface temperature (LST) forecasting is of great significance for application in climate-related, agricultural, eco-environmental, or industrial studies. Hybrid data-driven prediction models using Ensemble Empirical Mode Composition (EEMD) coupled with Machine Learning (ML) algorithms are useful for achieving these purposes because they
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Daily land surface temperature (LST) forecasting is of great significance for application in climate-related, agricultural, eco-environmental, or industrial studies. Hybrid data-driven prediction models using Ensemble Empirical Mode Composition (EEMD) coupled with Machine Learning (ML) algorithms are useful for achieving these purposes because they can reduce the difficulty of modeling, require less history data, are easy to develop, and are less complex than physical models. In this article, a computationally simple, less data-intensive, fast and efficient novel hybrid data-driven model called the EEMD Long Short-Term Memory (LSTM) neural network, namely EEMD-LSTM, is proposed to reduce the difficulty of modeling and to improve prediction accuracy. The daily LST data series from the Mapoling and Zhijaing stations in the Dongting Lake basin, central south China, from 1 January 2014 to 31 December 2016 is used as a case study. The EEMD is firstly employed to decompose the original daily LST data series into many Intrinsic Mode Functions (IMFs) and a single residue item. Then, the Partial Autocorrelation Function (PACF) is used to obtain the number of input data sample points for LSTM models. Next, the LSTM models are constructed to predict the decompositions. All the predicted results of the decompositions are aggregated as the final daily LST. Finally, the prediction performance of the hybrid EEMD-LSTM model is assessed in terms of the Mean Square Error (MSE), Mean Absolute Error (MAE), Mean Absolute Percentage Error (MAPE), Root Mean Square Error (RMSE), Pearson Correlation Coefficient (CC) and Nash-Sutcliffe Coefficient of Efficiency (NSCE). To validate the hybrid data-driven model, the hybrid EEMD-LSTM model is compared with the Recurrent Neural Network (RNN), LSTM and Empirical Mode Decomposition (EMD) coupled with RNN, EMD-LSTM and EEMD-RNN models, and their comparison results demonstrate that the hybrid EEMD-LSTM model performs better than the other five models. The scatterplots of the predicted results of the six models versus the original daily LST data series show that the hybrid EEMD-LSTM model is superior to the other five models. It is concluded that the proposed hybrid EEMD-LSTM model in this study is a suitable tool for temperature forecasting. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Climate Change and Health)
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Open AccessArticle Removing Organic Matter and Nutrients from Pig Farm Wastewater with a Constructed Wetland System
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1031; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051031
Received: 22 March 2018 / Revised: 4 May 2018 / Accepted: 5 May 2018 / Published: 21 May 2018
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Abstract
Pollutants from pig farms in Mexico have caused problems in many surface water reservoirs. Growing concern has driven the search for low-cost wastewater treatment solutions. The objective of this research was to evaluate the potential of an in-series constructed wetland to remove nutrients
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Pollutants from pig farms in Mexico have caused problems in many surface water reservoirs. Growing concern has driven the search for low-cost wastewater treatment solutions. The objective of this research was to evaluate the potential of an in-series constructed wetland to remove nutrients from wastewater from a pig farm. The wetland system had a horizontal flow that consisted of three cells, the first a surface water wetland, the second a sedimentation cell, and the third a subsurface flow wetland. The vegetation used was Thypa sp. and Scirpus sp. A mix of soil with red volcanic rock (10–30 mm diameter) and yellow sand (2–8 mm diameter) was used as a substrate for the vegetation. The experiments were carried out in duplicate. Water samples were collected at the inflow and outflow of the cells. Two hydraulic retention times (HRT) (5 and 10 days) and three treatments were evaluated: 400, 800, and 1200 mg·L−1 of chemical oxygen demand (COD) concentration. Data was collected in situ for temperature, pH, dissolved oxygen (DO), electrical conductivity (EC), and total dissolved solids (TDS). COD, total Kjeldahl nitrogen (TKN), ammonia nitrogen (NH3–N), and total phosphorous (TP) were analyzed in the laboratory. The results showed that the in-series constructed wetland is a feasible system for nutrient pollutant removal, with COD removal efficiency of 76% and 80% mg·L−1 for a 5- and 10-day HRT, respectively. The removal efficiency for TKN, NH3–N, and TP reached about 70% with a 5-day HRT, while a removal of 85% was obtained with a 10-day HRT. The wetland reached the maximum removal efficiency with a 10-day HRT and an inflow load of 400 mg·L−1 of organic matter. The results indicate that HRT positively affects removal efficiency of COD and TDS. On the other hand, the HRT was not the determining factor for TP removal. Treatment one, with an initial COD concentration of 400 mg·L−1, had the highest removal of the assessed pollutants, allowing for the use of water for irrigation according to Mexican regulatory standards (NOM-001). The water quality resulting from treatments two and three (T2 = 800 mg·L−1 of COD and T3 = 1200 mg·L−1 of COD) did not comply with minimal requirements for irrigation water. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Effects of Pb Smelting on the Soil Bacterial Community near a Secondary Lead Plant
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1030; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051030
Received: 26 March 2018 / Revised: 13 May 2018 / Accepted: 17 May 2018 / Published: 20 May 2018
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Abstract
Secondary lead smelting is a widespread industrial activity which has exacerbated Pb or Cd contamination of soil and water across the world. Soil physicochemical properties, soil enzyme activities, heavy metal concentrations, and bacterial diversity near a secondary lead plant in Xuzhou, China were
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Secondary lead smelting is a widespread industrial activity which has exacerbated Pb or Cd contamination of soil and water across the world. Soil physicochemical properties, soil enzyme activities, heavy metal concentrations, and bacterial diversity near a secondary lead plant in Xuzhou, China were examined in this study. The results showed that secondary lead smelting activities influenced nearby soils. Soil acidification decreased one order of magnitude, with a mean value of 7.3. Soil organic matter also showed a downward trend, while potassium and nitrogen appeared to accumulate. Soil urease and protease activity increased in samples with greater heavy metal pollution, but overall the soil microbial biodiversity decreased. Soil heavy metal concentration—especially Pb and Cd—greatly exceeded the concentrations of Chinese Environmental Quality Standard for Soils (GB 15618-1995). Some environmental factors—such as pH, organic matter, enzyme activity, and the concentration of heavy metals—significantly affected bacterial diversity: compared with the control site, the Chao1 estimator decreased about 50%, while the Shannon diversity index dropped approximately 20%. Moreover, some genera have significant relationships with heavy metal concentration—such as Ramlibacter with Zn and Steroidobacter with Cd—which might act as bio-indicators for soil remediation. These results will provide a new insight in the future for reclaiming soil contaminants caused by secondary lead smelting. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Environmental Science and Engineering)
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Open AccessArticle Effects of Different Spectral Shapes and Amplitude Modulation of Broadband Noise on Annoyance Reactions in a Controlled Listening Experiment
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1029; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051029
Received: 28 March 2018 / Revised: 15 May 2018 / Accepted: 16 May 2018 / Published: 19 May 2018
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Abstract
Environmental noise from transportation or industrial infrastructure typically has a broad frequency range. Different sources may have disparate acoustical characteristics, which may in turn affect noise annoyance. However, knowledge of the relative contribution of the different acoustical characteristics of broadband noise to annoyance
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Environmental noise from transportation or industrial infrastructure typically has a broad frequency range. Different sources may have disparate acoustical characteristics, which may in turn affect noise annoyance. However, knowledge of the relative contribution of the different acoustical characteristics of broadband noise to annoyance is still scarce. In this study, the subjectively perceived short-term (acute) annoyance reactions to different broadband sounds (namely, realistic outdoor wind turbine and artificial, generic sounds) at 40 dBA were investigated in a controlled laboratory listening experiment. Combined with the factorial design of the experiment, the sounds allowed for separation of the effects of three acoustical characteristics on annoyance, namely, spectral shape, depth of periodic amplitude modulation (AM), and occurrence (or absence) of random AM. Fifty-two participants rated their annoyance with the sounds. Annoyance increased with increasing energy content in the low-frequency range as well as with depth of periodic AM, and was higher in situations with random AM than without. Similar annoyance changes would be evoked by sound pressure level changes of up to 8 dB. The results suggest that besides standard sound pressure level metrics, other acoustical characteristics of (broadband) noise should also be considered in environmental impact assessments, e.g., in the context of wind turbine installations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Noise-Related Annoyance)
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Open AccessArticle An Effectiveness Assessment of China’s WEEE Treatment Fund
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1028; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051028
Received: 18 April 2018 / Revised: 11 May 2018 / Accepted: 17 May 2018 / Published: 19 May 2018
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Abstract
Policy is essential to the management of waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE). In order to present valuable findings for policy improvement, we performed a quantitative effectiveness assessment of China’s WEEE treatment fund from 2012 to 2015. The achievement of the general goal
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Policy is essential to the management of waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE). In order to present valuable findings for policy improvement, we performed a quantitative effectiveness assessment of China’s WEEE treatment fund from 2012 to 2015. The achievement of the general goal of the WEEE treatment fund was evaluated with various indicators. We calculated the values of all indicators and analyzed the changes in them. The results show that the WEEE treatment fund was important in promoting WEEE collection and recycling activities and has provided great benefits in the form of resources and the environment. Moreover, the authorized enterprises also experienced progress in their development. In a word, the WEEE treatment fund was effective to some extent. However, because of the limited subsidies and other factors, the WEEE treatment fund had different effects on five categories of WEEE. We found that its approach worked best for the TV set. Although the promotional effects on the other four categories of WEEE have been increasingly significant since 2014, there is room for improvement. Fortunately, the subsidy rates have been adjusted by administrations and new subsidies were provided in 2016. As it is crucial for the effectiveness of the WEEE treatment fund, new subsidy rates should be evaluated regularly. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Sensitivity Analysis of Weather Variables on Offsite Consequence Analysis Tools in South Korea and the United States
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1027; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051027
Received: 30 March 2018 / Revised: 8 May 2018 / Accepted: 15 May 2018 / Published: 18 May 2018
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Abstract
We studied sensitive weather variables for consequence analysis, in the case of chemical leaks on the user side of offsite consequence analysis (OCA) tools. We used OCA tools Korea Offsite Risk Assessment (KORA) and Areal Location of Hazardous Atmospheres (ALOHA) in South Korea
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We studied sensitive weather variables for consequence analysis, in the case of chemical leaks on the user side of offsite consequence analysis (OCA) tools. We used OCA tools Korea Offsite Risk Assessment (KORA) and Areal Location of Hazardous Atmospheres (ALOHA) in South Korea and the United States, respectively. The chemicals used for this analysis were 28% ammonia (NH3), 35% hydrogen chloride (HCl), 50% hydrofluoric acid (HF), and 69% nitric acid (HNO3). The accident scenarios were based on leakage accidents in storage tanks. The weather variables were air temperature, wind speed, humidity, and atmospheric stability. Sensitivity analysis was performed using the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) program for dummy regression analysis. Sensitivity analysis showed that impact distance was not sensitive to humidity. Impact distance was most sensitive to atmospheric stability, and was also more sensitive to air temperature than wind speed, according to both the KORA and ALOHA tools. Moreover, the weather variables were more sensitive in rural conditions than in urban conditions, with the ALOHA tool being more influenced by weather variables than the KORA tool. Therefore, if using the ALOHA tool instead of the KORA tool in rural conditions, users should be careful not to cause any differences in impact distance due to input errors of weather variables, with the most sensitive one being atmospheric stability. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Smoking, Blood Pressure, and Cardiovascular Disease Mortality in a Large Cohort of Chinese Men with 15 Years Follow-up
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1026; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051026
Received: 23 February 2018 / Revised: 13 May 2018 / Accepted: 14 May 2018 / Published: 18 May 2018
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Abstract
Background: To examine the joint effects of smoking and blood pressure on the risk of mortality from cardiovascular disease (CVD) in a cohort of Chinese men. Methods: This study followed a cohort of 213,221 men over 40 years of age who were recruited
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Background: To examine the joint effects of smoking and blood pressure on the risk of mortality from cardiovascular disease (CVD) in a cohort of Chinese men. Methods: This study followed a cohort of 213,221 men over 40 years of age who were recruited from 45 district/counties across China between 1990–1991, and whose cause-specific mortality was examined for 15 years, up to 31 December 2005. We calculated hazard ratios for all-cause mortality and CVD, ischemic heart disease (IHD), and stroke mortality for the combined sets of smoking status and blood pressure levels using the Cox proportional hazard model, adjusting for potential individual-level and contextual-level risk factors. Results: During the 15 years of follow-up, 52,795 deaths occurred, including 18,833 deaths from CVD, 3744 deaths from IHD, and 11,288 deaths from stroke. The risk of mortality from CVD, IHD, and stroke increased significantly, with increased systolic blood pressure (SBP), diastolic blood pressure (DBP), and with more pack years of smoking. Compared with never-smokers with normal blood pressure, the hazard ratios and 95% CI of CVD, IHD, and stroke mortality for those who smoked over 20 pack years with hypertension were remarkably increased to 2.30 (95% CI: 2.12–2.50), 1.78 (95% CI: 1.48–2.14), and 2.74 (95% CI: 2.45–3.07), respectively. Conclusion: There was a combined effect on the risk of CVD, IHD, and stroke mortality between smoking and hypertension. The joint efforts on smoking cessation and lowered blood pressure should be made to prevent cardiovascular disease mortality in Chinese men. Full article
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Open AccessReview Measuring Cortisol in the Classroom with School-Aged Children—A Systematic Review and Recommendations
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1025; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051025
Received: 14 March 2018 / Revised: 27 April 2018 / Accepted: 10 May 2018 / Published: 18 May 2018
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Abstract
The collection of salivary cortisol has been chosen as one of the least intrusive, easiest to collect, analyze, and store methods of obtaining information on physiological changes. It is, however, not clear what the best practice is when collecting salivary cortisol from children
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The collection of salivary cortisol has been chosen as one of the least intrusive, easiest to collect, analyze, and store methods of obtaining information on physiological changes. It is, however, not clear what the best practice is when collecting salivary cortisol from children within the school setting. The aim of this systematic review is to evaluate the feasibility of cortisol collection in schools for future research and to make recommendations for best practice. The review included 25 peer-reviewed articles from seven databases. The hypotheses of the included studies vary, but they all use cortisol as a diurnal, baseline, or acute measure, or to measure the effect of an intervention. Two methods of salivary cortisol collection were preferred by most of the research, i.e., passive drool or cotton Salivettes. The review has concluded that cortisol is a physiological marker that can be successfully measured in school-based research. However, there are discrepancies across studies when evaluating the collection guidelines, protocols, and instructions to participants as well as transparency of the success rate of obtaining all samples. Recommendations are made for future research to address and avoid such discrepancies and improve cross-study comparisons by implementing standard protocol guidelines. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Smoking Topography among Korean Smokers: Intensive Smoking Behavior with Larger Puff Volume and Shorter Interpuff Interval
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1024; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051024
Received: 26 April 2018 / Revised: 16 May 2018 / Accepted: 17 May 2018 / Published: 18 May 2018
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Abstract
The difference of smoker’s topography has been found to be a function many factors, including sex, personality, nicotine yield, cigarette type (i.e., flavored versus non-flavored) and ethnicity. We evaluated the puffing behaviors of Korean smokers and its association with smoking-related biomarker levels. A
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The difference of smoker’s topography has been found to be a function many factors, including sex, personality, nicotine yield, cigarette type (i.e., flavored versus non-flavored) and ethnicity. We evaluated the puffing behaviors of Korean smokers and its association with smoking-related biomarker levels. A sample of 300 participants was randomly recruited from metropolitan areas in South Korea. Topography measures during a 24-hour period were obtained using a CReSS pocket device. Korean male smokers smoked two puffs less per cigarette compared to female smokers (15.0 (13.0–19.0) vs. 17.5 (15.0–21.0) as the median (Interquartile range)), but had a significantly larger puff volume (62.7 (52.7–75.5) mL vs. 53.5 (42.0–64.2) mL); p = 0.012). The interpuff interval was similar between men and women (8.9 (6.5–11.2) s vs. 8.3 (6.2–11.0) s; p = 0.122) but much shorter than other study results. A dose-response association (p = 0.0011) was observed between daily total puff volumes and urinary cotinine concentrations, after controlling for sex, age, household income level and nicotine addiction level. An understanding of the difference of topography measures, particularly the larger puff volume and shorter interpuff interval of Korean smokers, may help to overcome a potential underestimation of internal doses of hazardous byproducts of smoking. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Health Behavior, Chronic Disease and Health Promotion)
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Open AccessArticle Adult Premenopausal Bone Health Related to Reproductive Characteristics—Population-Based Data from the Canadian Multicentre Osteoporosis Study (CaMos)
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1023; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051023
Received: 14 March 2018 / Revised: 4 May 2018 / Accepted: 7 May 2018 / Published: 18 May 2018
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Abstract
Amenorrhea is important for women’s bone health. However, few have reported reproductive, anthropometric (body mass index [BMI], height) and bone health (areal bone mineral density [BMD], prevalent fractures) in a population-based study. The purposes of this cross-sectional study of women in the randomly-selected
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Amenorrhea is important for women’s bone health. However, few have reported reproductive, anthropometric (body mass index [BMI], height) and bone health (areal bone mineral density [BMD], prevalent fractures) in a population-based study. The purposes of this cross-sectional study of women in the randomly-selected Canadian Multicentre Osteoporosis Study (CaMos) population were: (1) to describe reproductive, demographic, anthropometric and lifestyle variables; and (2) in menstruating women, to relate reproductive and other variables to BMD at the lumbar spine (L1-4, LS), femoral neck (FN) and total hip (TH) sites and to prevalent fragility fractures. This study describes the reproductive characteristics of 1532 women aged 30–60 years. BMD relationships with reproductive and other variables were described in the 499 menstruating women. Mean menarche age was 12.8 years, 96% of women were parous and 95% had used combined hormonal contraceptives (CHC). Infertility was reported by 9%, androgen excess by 13%, amenorrhea by 8% and nulliparity by 4%. LS BMD was negatively associated with amenorrhea and androgen excess and positively related to current BMI and height. A later age at menarche negatively related to FN BMD. BMI and height were strongly related to BMD at all sites. Prevalent fragility fractures were significantly associated with quartiles of both LS and TH BMD. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Concepts in Women’s Bone Health)
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Open AccessArticle Views and Experiences of Persons with Chronic Diseases about Strategies that Aim to Integrate and Re-Integrate Them into Work: A Systematic Review of Qualitative Studies
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1022; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051022
Received: 14 April 2018 / Revised: 15 May 2018 / Accepted: 16 May 2018 / Published: 18 May 2018
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Abstract
The effectiveness of strategies targeting professional integration and reintegration strongly depends on the experiences of participants. The aim of this systematic literature review is to synthesize European qualitative studies exploring views and experiences of persons with chronic conditions regarding strategies for integration and
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The effectiveness of strategies targeting professional integration and reintegration strongly depends on the experiences of participants. The aim of this systematic literature review is to synthesize European qualitative studies exploring views and experiences of persons with chronic conditions regarding strategies for integration and reintegration into work. The systematic search was conducted in Medline, PsycINFO, CDR-HTA, CDR-DARE and Cochrane Systematic Reviews. Overall, 24 studies published in English between January 2011 and April 2016 were included. Most studies were carried out in Nordic countries or in the UK, and most participants were persons with either mental or musculoskeletal disorders. Ten themes emerged: individual and holistic approach, clarity of strategy and processes, timing of rehabilitation processes, experience with professionals, at the workplace and with peer groups, changes in the understanding of health and work, active involvement in the process, competencies development and motivating aspects of work. Findings highlight, among others, the need to actively involve participants in the return to work process and to provide timely and clearly structured processes and interventions. This review provides stakeholders key information to develop, plan, implement and evaluate interventions to integrate and re-integrate persons with chronic conditions into work in Europe. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Analysis of Short-Term Smoking Effects in PBMC of Healthy Subjects—Preliminary Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1021; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051021
Received: 4 April 2018 / Revised: 11 May 2018 / Accepted: 14 May 2018 / Published: 18 May 2018
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Abstract
Early structural changes exist in the small airways before the establishment of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). These changes are believed to be induced by oxidation. The aim of this study was to analyze the influence of short-term smoking on the expression of
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Early structural changes exist in the small airways before the establishment of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). These changes are believed to be induced by oxidation. The aim of this study was to analyze the influence of short-term smoking on the expression of the genes contributing to airway remodeling and their relationship with the oxidative status of human blood cells. Blood mononuclear cells were isolated from 16 healthy volunteers and treated with cigarette smoke ingredients (CSI): nicotine, 1-Nitrosodimethylamine, N-Nitrosopyrrolidyne, vinyl chloride, acetone, and acrolein. The expression of TGF-β1, TIMP-1, SOD1, and arginase I was determined by qPCR. Additionally, thiol groups and TBARs were assessed. CSI induced TGF and TIMP-1 expression in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC), and apocynin alleviated this effect. The changes were more noticeable in the smoking group (p < 0.05). TBARs concentrations were higher in smokers, and in this group, apocynin acted more effectively. SOD1 correlated with arginase expression in smokers (p < 0.05). MMP-9 showed a significant correlation with SOD1 in both groups, but only on the protein level. Blood cells appear to mirror the general changes caused by cigarette smoke ingredients, which seem to be connected with the oxidative status of the cell. Our findings indicate that a short period of smoking influences the gene expression and oxidative balance of blood cells, which might result in the development of serious disorders such as COPD. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Health Behavior, Chronic Disease and Health Promotion)
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Open AccessArticle Eating Alone is Differentially Associated with the Risk of Metabolic Syndrome in Korean Men and Women
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 1020; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051020
Received: 19 April 2018 / Revised: 11 May 2018 / Accepted: 14 May 2018 / Published: 18 May 2018
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Abstract
Few studies have examined overall patterns of eating alone in relation to the risk of metabolic syndrome (MetS) in Korean populations. The present study aimed to examine the relationship between patterns of eating alone and the risk of MetS in Korean adults. Data
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Few studies have examined overall patterns of eating alone in relation to the risk of metabolic syndrome (MetS) in Korean populations. The present study aimed to examine the relationship between patterns of eating alone and the risk of MetS in Korean adults. Data from the Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (KNHANES) for 2013–2015 were used, with 8988 Korean adult participants, including 3624 men and 5364 women, aged 18 to 64 years. Patterns of eating alone were categorized into eight groups based on the total frequency of eating alone on a daily basis in the past one year: (1) three times for breakfast, lunch, and dinner; (2) twice for breakfast and dinner; (3) twice for lunch and dinner; (4) twice for breakfast and lunch; (5) once for breakfast only; (6) once for lunch only; (7) once for dinner only; and (8) never eating alone. The presence of MetS has been defined by the National Cholesterol Education Program Adult Treatment Panel III (NCEP ATP III) and International Diabetes Federation (IDF). Multivariable logistic regression analyses were performed to assess the association between patterns of eating alone versus the risk of MetS after controlling for age, income, occupation, number of family members, generation types, marital status, smoking status, and physical activity. The prevalence of MetS was the highest in men and women aged 40–64 who had breakfast, lunch, and dinner alone (50.1% and 36.8%, respectively). Men who had dinner alone or lunch and dinner alone compared with those who eat with others had a significantly higher risk of MetS, with adjusted odds ratios (AOR) of 1.51, and a 95% confidence interval (CI) of 1.06–2.16; and an AOR of 1.54, with a 95% CI of 1.05–2.25, respectively. Women who had breakfast alone compared with those who ate with others had a significantly lower risk of MetS (AOR 0.70, 95% CI 0.53–0.94). In conclusion, patterns of eating alone are differentially associated with the risk of MetS in a representative sample of Korean adults. Future studies are warranted to identify dietary patterns across the different eating alone patterns in relation to various health outcomes in Korean adult populations. Full article
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