London: Being bossed
around in a stressful job raises chances of a heart attack by 25
percent, warn researchers.
They said workers who feel over-pressured yet powerless are more
at danger than counterparts who suffer less stress. Their findings
are based on 200,000 workers, including civil servants to factory
"Our findings indicate that job strain is associated with a small
but consistent increased risk of experiencing a first coronary
heart disease event, such as a heart attack," said Mika Kivimaki,
professor at the University College London (UCL), who led the
study, medical journal The Lancet reports.
Previous research has suggested stress at work can trigger heart
problems but there have been conflicting results. The UCL
investigation pooled results from 13 studies in Britain, Belgium,
Denmark, Finland, France, the Netherlands and Sweden between 1985
All the men and women taking part completed questionnaires about
their jobs, workload, deadlines and freedom to make decisions.
None had suffered a heart attack before providing the details,
according to the Daily Mail.
Over an average follow-up period of 7.5 years, researchers
recorded 2,356 cases of heart disease. These included hospital
admissions due to heart attacks and deaths from coronary failure.
Kivimaki said job stress may account for a "notable proportion" of
heart problems in the working population.
He said that stress reduction would have a much smaller impact
than tackling either lack of exercise or smoking, which had a
negative effect 10 times greater.