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Work schedules and 11-year progression of carotid atherosclerosis in middle-aged Finnish men.



This study investigated the relationship between different work schedules and progression of carotid atherosclerosis, an early indicator of cardiovascular disease (CVD).


We studied 621 men, aged 42-60 years, in the prospective Kuopio Ischemic Heart Disease Risk Factor Study cohort. Using multivariable regressions adjusting for 22 covariates including total time worked during follow-up, we evaluated the associations of baseline work schedules with 11-year progression of ultrasonographically assessed carotid intima-media thickness (IMT), and their variation by preexisting CVD.


Standard daytime work, weekend shifts, and evening/night/rotating shifts were associated with 31%, 37%, and 33% increases in IMT, respectively. Compared to daytime workers, weekend workers experienced a faster progression of carotid atherosclerosis [relative change ratio (RCR) = 1.05, 95% CI: 1.00-1.09)]. This ratio was higher among men who had preexisting CVD.


Weekend shifts, more than standard daytime work, appear to accelerate carotid atherosclerosis progression among middle-aged Finnish men, especially those with pre-existing CVD.

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