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Am J Ind Med. 2016 Jul;59(7):532-7. doi: 10.1002/ajim.22608. Epub 2016 May 17.

Mortality from neurodegenerative diseases in a cohort of US flight attendants.

Author information

1
Industrywide Studies Branch, Division of Surveillance, Hazard Evaluations and Field Studies, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Cincinnati, Ohio.
2
CACI, Inc., Cincinnati, Ohio.
3
Epidemiology Branch, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Concern exists about the potential chronic neurological effects among aircrew of exposure to chemical contaminants from engine oil in aircraft cabin air. We evaluated mortality from neurodegenerative diseases among 11,311 former US flight attendants.

METHODS:

Vital status was ascertained through 2007, and life table analyses were conducted to obtain standardized mortality ratios (SMRs).

RESULTS:

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) mortality was over twice as high in the cohort as in the US general population, based on nine observed ALS deaths. There was no clear pattern in risk when SMRs for ALS were stratified by exposure duration. Mortality from other neurodegenerative diseases was not elevated.

CONCLUSIONS:

Our findings are limited due to small numbers of observed deaths and reliance on mortality data, but suggest that flight attendants may have an increased risk of ALS. Additional research is needed. Am. J. Ind. Med. 59:532-537, 2016. Published 2016. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.

KEYWORDS:

ALS; cohort; flight attendants; mortality; neurodegenerative diseases

PMID:
27184412
PMCID:
PMC4915549
DOI:
10.1002/ajim.22608
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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