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Medically unexplained symptoms and the risk of loss of labor market participation--a prospective study in the Danish population.

Loengaard K, Bjorner JB, Fink PK, Burr H, Rugulies R - BMC Public Health (2015)

Bottom Line: Participants were classified with MUS if they: a) had reported three or more symptoms during the last month, and b) did not have a chronic condition, neither in the self-reported nor the register data.MUS participants also showed an elevated RR with regard to risk of disability pensioning, however this association was not statistically significant (RR = 2.06, 95% CI = 0.77-5.52).MUS seem to have a negative effect on labor market participation defined by LTSA and unemployment, whereas it is more uncertain whether MUS affects risk of disability pensioning.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: National Research Centre for the Working Environment, Lerso Parkalle 105, DK-2100, Copenhagen, Denmark. nfa.klo@gmail.com.

ABSTRACT

Background: Medically Unexplained Symptoms (MUS) are frequently encountered in general practice. However, little is known whether MUS affects labor market participation. We investigated the prospective association between MUS at baseline and risk of long-term sickness absence (LTSA), unemployment, and disability pensioning in a 5-year-follow-up study.

Methods: In the Danish Work Environment Cohort Study 2005, 8187 randomly selected employees from the Danish general population answered a questionnaire on work and health. Responses were linked with national registers on prescribed medication and hospital treatment. Participants were classified with MUS if they: a) had reported three or more symptoms during the last month, and b) did not have a chronic condition, neither in the self-reported nor the register data. We assessed LTSA, unemployment, and disability pensioning by linking our data with National registers of social transfer payments.

Results: Of the 8187 participants, 272 (3.3%) were categorized with MUS. Compared to healthy participants, participants with MUS had an increased risk of LTSA (Rate ratio (RR) = 1.76, 95% CI = 1.28-2.42), and of unemployment (RR = 1.48, 95% CI = 1.02-2.15) during follow-up. MUS participants also showed an elevated RR with regard to risk of disability pensioning, however this association was not statistically significant (RR = 2.06, 95% CI = 0.77-5.52).

Conclusion: MUS seem to have a negative effect on labor market participation defined by LTSA and unemployment, whereas it is more uncertain whether MUS affects risk of disability pensioning.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Categorization of the four compared groups according to symptom score and chronic disease
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Fig1: Categorization of the four compared groups according to symptom score and chronic disease

Mentions: Based on the categorization with regard to low or high symptom scores and presence or absence of chronic disease we assigned each participant to one of four groups (Fig. 1): 1) low symptom score (<3 symptoms) and no chronic disease (denoted as the ‘healthy group’); 2) high symptom score (≥3 symptoms) and no chronic disease (denoted as the ‘high-symptom-no-chronic group’) who we regarded as possible MUS cases; 3) low symptom score (<3 symptoms) and chronic disease (denoted as the ‘low-symptom-chronic group’); and 4) high symptom score (≥3 symptoms) and chronic disease (denoted as the ‘high-symptom-chronic group’).Fig. 1


Medically unexplained symptoms and the risk of loss of labor market participation--a prospective study in the Danish population.

Loengaard K, Bjorner JB, Fink PK, Burr H, Rugulies R - BMC Public Health (2015)

Categorization of the four compared groups according to symptom score and chronic disease
© Copyright Policy - OpenAccess
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License 1 - License 2
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4556215&req=5

Fig1: Categorization of the four compared groups according to symptom score and chronic disease
Mentions: Based on the categorization with regard to low or high symptom scores and presence or absence of chronic disease we assigned each participant to one of four groups (Fig. 1): 1) low symptom score (<3 symptoms) and no chronic disease (denoted as the ‘healthy group’); 2) high symptom score (≥3 symptoms) and no chronic disease (denoted as the ‘high-symptom-no-chronic group’) who we regarded as possible MUS cases; 3) low symptom score (<3 symptoms) and chronic disease (denoted as the ‘low-symptom-chronic group’); and 4) high symptom score (≥3 symptoms) and chronic disease (denoted as the ‘high-symptom-chronic group’).Fig. 1

Bottom Line: Participants were classified with MUS if they: a) had reported three or more symptoms during the last month, and b) did not have a chronic condition, neither in the self-reported nor the register data.MUS participants also showed an elevated RR with regard to risk of disability pensioning, however this association was not statistically significant (RR = 2.06, 95% CI = 0.77-5.52).MUS seem to have a negative effect on labor market participation defined by LTSA and unemployment, whereas it is more uncertain whether MUS affects risk of disability pensioning.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: National Research Centre for the Working Environment, Lerso Parkalle 105, DK-2100, Copenhagen, Denmark. nfa.klo@gmail.com.

ABSTRACT

Background: Medically Unexplained Symptoms (MUS) are frequently encountered in general practice. However, little is known whether MUS affects labor market participation. We investigated the prospective association between MUS at baseline and risk of long-term sickness absence (LTSA), unemployment, and disability pensioning in a 5-year-follow-up study.

Methods: In the Danish Work Environment Cohort Study 2005, 8187 randomly selected employees from the Danish general population answered a questionnaire on work and health. Responses were linked with national registers on prescribed medication and hospital treatment. Participants were classified with MUS if they: a) had reported three or more symptoms during the last month, and b) did not have a chronic condition, neither in the self-reported nor the register data. We assessed LTSA, unemployment, and disability pensioning by linking our data with National registers of social transfer payments.

Results: Of the 8187 participants, 272 (3.3%) were categorized with MUS. Compared to healthy participants, participants with MUS had an increased risk of LTSA (Rate ratio (RR) = 1.76, 95% CI = 1.28-2.42), and of unemployment (RR = 1.48, 95% CI = 1.02-2.15) during follow-up. MUS participants also showed an elevated RR with regard to risk of disability pensioning, however this association was not statistically significant (RR = 2.06, 95% CI = 0.77-5.52).

Conclusion: MUS seem to have a negative effect on labor market participation defined by LTSA and unemployment, whereas it is more uncertain whether MUS affects risk of disability pensioning.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus