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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health, Volume 6, Issue 10 (October 2009), Pages 2526-2724

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Editorial

Jump to: Research, Review

Open AccessEditorial Sustainability: Environmental Studies and Public Health
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2009, 6(10), 2623-2625; doi:10.3390/ijerph6102623
Received: 16 September 2009 / Accepted: 30 September 2009 / Published: 9 October 2009
PDF Full-text (159 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This special issue ‘Sustainability: Environmental Studies and Public Health’ is part of the internationally leading 'International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health’. I was invited to be the guest editor, and to oversee the refereeing process and subsequent selection of [...] Read more.
This special issue ‘Sustainability: Environmental Studies and Public Health’ is part of the internationally leading 'International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health’. I was invited to be the guest editor, and to oversee the refereeing process and subsequent selection of timely, relevant and high quality papers highlighting particularly novel aspects concerned with sustainability issues in environmental studies. [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainability: Environmental Studies and Public Health)

Research

Jump to: Editorial, Review

Open AccessArticle Epidemiological Study of Rickettsial Infections in Patients with Hypertransaminemia in Madrid (Spain)
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2009, 6(10), 2526-2533; doi:10.3390/ijerph6102526
Received: 19 August 2009 / Accepted: 23 September 2009 / Published: 28 September 2009
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (254 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
A retrospective analysis was performed to detect anti-rickettsial antibodies in the serum of patients with hypertransaminemia of unknown etiology, and in that of healthy members of the general population of Madrid (Spain). Among 143 patients 16 (11.2%) were positive for anti-R. [...] Read more.
A retrospective analysis was performed to detect anti-rickettsial antibodies in the serum of patients with hypertransaminemia of unknown etiology, and in that of healthy members of the general population of Madrid (Spain). Among 143 patients 16 (11.2%) were positive for anti-R. conorii IgG antibodies and 7% for R. typhi. PCR analysis was performed in patients with IgM antibodies. Among 143 healthy subjects from the general population, seven (4.9%) were positive for anti-R. conorii IgG antibodies, and 2.8% for R. typhi. These results show that anti-rickettsial antibodies are more commonly detected in patients with hypertransaminemia than in healthy people. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Tobacco Use, Exposure to Secondhand Smoke, and Training on Cessation Counseling Among Nursing Students: Cross-Country Data from the Global Health Professions Student Survey (GHPSS), 2005–2009
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2009, 6(10), 2534-2549; doi:10.3390/ijerph6102534
Received: 19 August 2009 / Accepted: 23 September 2009 / Published: 28 September 2009
Cited by 21 | PDF Full-text (303 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The Nursing Global Health Professions Student Survey (GHPSS) has been conducted in schools in 39 countries and the Gaza Strip/West Bank (identified as “sites” for the remainder of this paper). In half the sites, over 20% of the students currently smoked cigarettes, [...] Read more.
The Nursing Global Health Professions Student Survey (GHPSS) has been conducted in schools in 39 countries and the Gaza Strip/West Bank (identified as “sites” for the remainder of this paper). In half the sites, over 20% of the students currently smoked cigarettes, with males having higher rates than females in 22 sites. Over 60% of students reported having been exposed to secondhand smoke in public places in 23 of 39 sites. The majority of students recognized that they are role models in society, believed they should receive training on counseling patients to quit using tobacco, but few reported receiving any formal training. Tobacco control efforts must discourage tobacco use among health professionals, promote smoke free workplaces, and implement programs that train health professionals in effective cessation-counseling techniques. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Tobacco Smoking and Public Health)
Open AccessArticle Clients’ Experiences of a Community Based Lifestyle Modification Program: A Qualitative Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2009, 6(10), 2608-2622; doi:10.3390/ijerph6102608
Received: 31 August 2009 / Accepted: 30 September 2009 / Published: 2 October 2009
Cited by 8 | PDF Full-text (123 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
There is little information about how clients attending lifestyle modification programs view the outcomes. This qualitative study examined the clients’ experience of a community based lifestyle modification program in Hong Kong. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 25 clients attending the program. Clients [...] Read more.
There is little information about how clients attending lifestyle modification programs view the outcomes. This qualitative study examined the clients’ experience of a community based lifestyle modification program in Hong Kong. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 25 clients attending the program. Clients perceived the program had positive impacts on their health and nutrition knowledge. They experienced frustration, negative emotion, lack of motivation, and pressure from others during the program. Working environment and lack of healthy food choices in restaurants were the major perceived environmental barriers for lifestyle modification. Clients valued nutritionists’ capability of providing professional information and psychological support in the program. Our results suggest that nutritionist’s capability of providing quality consultations and patient-centered care are important for empowering clients achieve lifestyle modification. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health Behavior and Public Health)
Open AccessArticle Food Choices and Coronary Heart Disease: A Population Based Cohort Study of Rural Swedish Men with 12 Years of Follow-up
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2009, 6(10), 2626-2638; doi:10.3390/ijerph6102626
Received: 18 August 2009 / Accepted: 30 September 2009 / Published: 12 October 2009
Cited by 14 | PDF Full-text (293 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Coronary heart disease is associated with diet. Nutritional recommendations are frequently provided, but few long term studies on the effect of food choices on heart disease are available. We followed coronary heart disease morbidity and mortality in a cohort of rural men [...] Read more.
Coronary heart disease is associated with diet. Nutritional recommendations are frequently provided, but few long term studies on the effect of food choices on heart disease are available. We followed coronary heart disease morbidity and mortality in a cohort of rural men (N = 1,752) participating in a prospective observational study. Dietary choices were assessed at baseline with a 15-item food questionnaire. 138 men were hospitalized or deceased owing to coronary heart disease during the 12 year follow-up. Daily intake of fruit and vegetables was associated with a lower risk of coronary heart disease when combined with a high dairy fat consumption (odds ratio 0.39, 95% CI 0.21-0.73), but not when combined with a low dairy fat consumption (odds ratio 1.70, 95% CI 0.97-2.98). Choosing wholemeal bread or eating fish at least twice a week showed no association with the outcome. Full article
Open AccessArticle The Relationship between Odour Annoyance Scores and Modelled Ambient Air Pollution in Sarnia, “Chemical Valley”, Ontario
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2009, 6(10), 2655-2675; doi:10.3390/ijerph6102655
Received: 18 August 2009 / Accepted: 9 October 2009 / Published: 16 October 2009
Cited by 13 | PDF Full-text (618 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This study aimed at establishing the relationship between annoyance scores and modelled air pollution in “Chemical Valley”, Sarnia, Ontario (Canada). Annoyance scores were taken from a community health survey (N = 774); and respondents’ exposure to nitrogen dioxide (NO2) and [...] Read more.
This study aimed at establishing the relationship between annoyance scores and modelled air pollution in “Chemical Valley”, Sarnia, Ontario (Canada). Annoyance scores were taken from a community health survey (N = 774); and respondents’ exposure to nitrogen dioxide (NO2) and sulphur dioxide (SO2) were estimated using land use regression (LUR) models. The associations were examined by univariate analysis while multivariate logistic regression was used to examine the determinants of odour annoyance. The results showed that odour annoyance was significantly correlated to modelled pollutants at the individual (NO2, r = 0.15; SO2, r = 0.13) and census tract (NO2, r = 0.56; SO2, r = 0.67) levels. The exposure-response relationships show that residents of Sarnia react to very low pollution concentrations levels even if they are within the Ontario ambient air quality criteria. The study found that exposure to high NO2 and SO2 concentrations, gender, and perception of health effects were significant determinants of individual odour annoyance reporting. The observed association between odour annoyance and modelled ambient pollution suggest that individual and census tract level annoyance scores may serve as proxies for air quality in exposed communities because they capture the within area spatial variability of pollution. However, questionnaire-based odour annoyance scores need to be validated longitudinally and across different scales if they are to be adopted for use at the national level. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Epidemiology)
Open AccessArticle Health and Retirement in Europe
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2009, 6(10), 2676-2695; doi:10.3390/ijerph6102676
Received: 27 August 2009 / Accepted: 12 October 2009 / Published: 20 October 2009
Cited by 10 | PDF Full-text (363 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
We use discrete-time hazard models with internationally comparable data from the full eight waves of the European Community Household Panel (ECHP) to study the relationship between retirement and health in nine European countries. Our results provide new evidence of the relationship of [...] Read more.
We use discrete-time hazard models with internationally comparable data from the full eight waves of the European Community Household Panel (ECHP) to study the relationship between retirement and health in nine European countries. Our results provide new evidence of the relationship of health shocks to early retirement. The pattern of results across countries reflects international differences in the incentives created by social security systems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health Economics)
Open AccessArticle Validity of Self-Reported Weight and Height of Adolescents, Its Impact on Classification into BMI-Categories and the Association with Weighing Behaviour
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2009, 6(10), 2696-2711; doi:10.3390/ijerph6102696
Received: 28 September 2009 / Accepted: 3 October 2009 / Published: 20 October 2009
Cited by 18 | PDF Full-text (293 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This paper investigated the validity of self-reported height and weight of adolescents for the diagnosis of underweight, overweight and obesity and the influence of weighing behaviour on the accuracy. A total of 982 adolescents reported their height, weight, weighing behaviour and eating [...] Read more.
This paper investigated the validity of self-reported height and weight of adolescents for the diagnosis of underweight, overweight and obesity and the influence of weighing behaviour on the accuracy. A total of 982 adolescents reported their height, weight, weighing behaviour and eating patterns in a questionnaire. Afterwards, their height and weight were measured and their Body Mass Index (BMI)-categories were determined using age- and gender-specific BMI cut-off points. Both girls and boys underreported their weight, whilst height was overestimated by girls and underestimated by boys. Cohen’s d indicated that these misreportings were in fact trivial. The prevalence of underweight was overestimated when using the self-reported BMI for classification, whilst the prevalence of overweight and obesity was underestimated. Gender and educational level influenced the accuracy of the adolescents’ self-reported BMI. Weighing behaviour only positively influenced the accuracy of the self-reported weight and not height or BMI. In summary, adolescents’ self-reported weight and height cannot replace measured values to determine their BMI-category, and thus the latter are highly recommended when investigating underweight, overweight and obesity in adolescents. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Obesity and Public Health)
Open AccessArticle Factors Affecting Use of Preventive Tests for Cardiovascular Risk among Greeks
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2009, 6(10), 2712-2724; doi:10.3390/ijerph6102712
Received: 26 August 2009 / Accepted: 19 October 2009 / Published: 23 October 2009
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (117 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Data from a Greek national representative sample was used to investigate socio-demographic, self-perceived health, and health risk factors that determine the use of cardiovascular preventive tests (blood pressure, cholesterol and blood glucose). Chi-square and logistic regression analyses were used (p < 0.05). Older age, marriage, regular family doctor and chronic diseases increased the likelihood of receiving preventive tests, whereas low education and alcohol consumption reduced the likelihood of having these tests. The effect of obesity varied. Interventions which improve the knowledge of the poorly educated and empower the preventive role of the physicians may redress the inequalities and improve the effectiveness of preventive services utilization. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health Behavior and Public Health)

Review

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Open AccessReview Specialist Community Nurses: A Critical Analysis of Their Role in the Management of Long-Term Conditions
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2009, 6(10), 2550-2567; doi:10.3390/ijerph6102550
Received: 3 September 2009 / Accepted: 25 September 2009 / Published: 29 September 2009
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (385 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The aim of this narrative review is to identify strategies in use by specialist community and public health nurses in the prevention, care and management of individuals with long-term conditions, specifically chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and musculoskeletal disorders. These conditions have [...] Read more.
The aim of this narrative review is to identify strategies in use by specialist community and public health nurses in the prevention, care and management of individuals with long-term conditions, specifically chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and musculoskeletal disorders. These conditions have been selected as they are highly prevalent; a burden on health services globally and a major public health issue. From a UK policy perspective, specialist community nurses have been placed at the forefront of taking a lead role in the coordination and delivery of more responsive services for individuals with long-term conditions; whether this has been an effective use of skills and resource is questionable. We systematically searched relevant databases between 1999–2009 to identify interventions used by specialist community nurses and critically appraised the studies. This review reports on impact and value of interventions used by specialist community nurses in the prevention and management of COPD and musculoskeletal conditions, and makes recommendations for improving services. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nursing and Public Health)
Open AccessReview Preventing and Managing Cardiometabolic Risk: The Logic for Intervention
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2009, 6(10), 2568-2584; doi:10.3390/ijerph6102568
Received: 10 August 2009 / Accepted: 29 September 2009 / Published: 30 September 2009
Cited by 14 | PDF Full-text (532 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Cardiometabolic risk (CMR), also known as metabolic syndrome or insulin resistance syndrome, comprises obesity (particularly central or abdominal obesity), high triglycerides, low HDL, elevated blood pressure, and elevated plasma glucose. Leading to death from diabetes, heart disease, and stroke, the root cause [...] Read more.
Cardiometabolic risk (CMR), also known as metabolic syndrome or insulin resistance syndrome, comprises obesity (particularly central or abdominal obesity), high triglycerides, low HDL, elevated blood pressure, and elevated plasma glucose. Leading to death from diabetes, heart disease, and stroke, the root cause of CMR is inadequate physical activity, a Western diet identified primarily by low intake of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, and high in saturated fat, as well as a number of yet-to-be-identified genetic factors. While the pathophysiological pathways related to CMR are complex, the universal need for adequate physical activity and a diet that emphasizes fruits and vegetables and whole grains, while minimizing food high in added sugars and saturated fat suggests that these behaviors are the appropriate focus of intervention. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cardiovascular Diseases and Public Health)
Open AccessReview Vitamin D and Calcium Insufficiency-Related Chronic Diseases: an Emerging World-Wide Public Health Problem
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2009, 6(10), 2585-2607; doi:10.3390/ijerph6102585
Received: 2 September 2009 / Accepted: 28 September 2009 / Published: 2 October 2009
Cited by 41 | PDF Full-text (163 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Vitamin D and calcium insufficiencies are risk factors for multiple chronic diseases. Data from 46 recent studies from Europe, North America, South-East Asia and the South Pacific area clearly indicate that a low vitamin D status and inadequate calcium nutrition are highly [...] Read more.
Vitamin D and calcium insufficiencies are risk factors for multiple chronic diseases. Data from 46 recent studies from Europe, North America, South-East Asia and the South Pacific area clearly indicate that a low vitamin D status and inadequate calcium nutrition are highly prevalent in the general population (30–80%), affecting both genders. The extent of insufficiencies is particularly high in older populations, and in some geographical areas, also in children and in young women of child-bearing age, in ethnic minorities and immigrants, as well as in people of low socio-economic status. Enrichment of cereal grain products with vitamin D and calcium would be a viable approach to increase consumption and improve health outcomes in the general population worldwide. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Epidemiology)
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Open AccessReview Assessing the Effects of Weather Conditions on Physical Activity Participation Using Objective Measures
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2009, 6(10), 2639-2654; doi:10.3390/ijerph6102639
Received: 7 September 2009 / Accepted: 30 September 2009 / Published: 12 October 2009
Cited by 43 | PDF Full-text (67 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Habitual physical activity is an important determinant of health, yet many people are considered to be inactive. Identification of the obstacles to greater participation is necessary for the development of strategies to overcome those obstacles. The weather has been identified as a [...] Read more.
Habitual physical activity is an important determinant of health, yet many people are considered to be inactive. Identification of the obstacles to greater participation is necessary for the development of strategies to overcome those obstacles. The weather has been identified as a perceived barrier to participation in physical activity, but exactly which adverse weather conditions are most important, and the extent to which they contribute to decreases in physical activity have rarely been quantified in populations. In the past decade, a small number of studies have used publicly available databases to examine the quantitative effects of weather (e.g., temperature, precipitation, wind) on physical activity in children, adolescents and adults. This review examines our historical, qualitative versus emerging, quantitative understanding of how specific weather conditions affect a population’s activity. Full article

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