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Am J Ind Med. 2005 Jan;47(1):20-6.

Chronic disease risk in central New York dairy farmers: results from a large health survey 1989-1999.

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Bassett Research Institute, Bassett Healthcare, Cooperstown, New York 13326, USA.



The agricultural workplace presents a variety of health and safety hazards; it is unknown whether farm work may be a risk factor for certain chronic diseases.


The health survey data from a large rural population in central New York were used from two studies (1989, 1999) to assess both 1999 prevalence and 10-year incidence of self-reported diabetes, heart disease, hypercholesterolemia, and hypertension among farm (predominantly dairy) and non-farm residents. The 1999 asthma prevalence was also assessed.


Multiple logistic regression models for 1999 prevalence found statistically significant protective effects of farming for hypertension (OR=0.83, P=0.0105) and hypercholesterolemia (OR=0.853, P=0.0522). Non-significant results were seen for heart disease (OR=0.67, P=0.128) and diabetes (OR=0.856, P=0.1358). The model for 1999 asthma prevalence showed a significantly elevated risk for farming (OR=1.542, P=0.0004). Logistic models created for the 10-year incidence of hypertension, hypercholesterolemia, diabetes, and heart disease did not show a significant effect for farming.


The protective effect of farming observed for the 1999 prevalence of hypertension and hypercholesterolemia was not seen for the 10-year incidence of these diseases.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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