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Aerosp Med Hum Perform. 2015 Oct;86(10):895-900. doi: 10.3357/AMHP.4325.2015.

Quality of Life, Health, and Sleep of Air Traffic Controllers with Different Shift Systems.

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State University of Campinas (UNICAMP), Campinas, Brazil.



Air traffic controllers (ATC) work shifts and their work schedules vary according to the characteristics of each airport. The human body adapts to shiftwork differently. These adjustments affect the health-disease process, predisposing ATC to risk conditions associated with sleep deprivation and lack of night sleep, which can lead to conditions such as cardiovascular diseases, mood disorders, anxiety, and obesity. This study investigated the characteristics of health, sleep, and quality of life of ATC exposed to 8-h alternate work shifts and 6-h rotational work shifts.


The study was cross-sectional with convenience samples consisting of 84 ATC from two international airports in Brazil. We applied questionnaires to collect data about socioeconomic conditions, quality of life, sleep, and physical activity levels. We also collected health data regarding nutritional status, body composition, and blood pressure. We analyzed the differences between ATC from the two airports considering the variables of sleep, quality of life, and health.


Differences were found between the groups in terms of body fat percentage (30.7% and 27.8%), scores of overall quality of life (56.2 and 68), concentration (3.37 and 3.96), energy (3.12 and 3.62), and sleep time on working days (5:20 h and 6:15 h).


ATC under 8-h alternate shifts showed lower scores for quality of life, higher body fat, and less sleep time on working days, which characterizes inadequate shiftwork for this population.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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