Lipid profile of firefighters over time: Opportunities for prevention

Elpidoforos S. Soteriades, Stefanos N. Kales, Dimitrios Liarokapis, Stavros G. Christoudias, Scott A. Tucker, David C. Christiani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Heart disease is the primary cause of on-duty deaths in firefighters, but little is known about their lipid profile. We evaluated the lipid profile in relation to other cardiovascular disease risk factors in 321 firefighters at a baseline examination. Prospective comparisons were performed for 285 firefighters, who were enrolled in a statewide medical surveillance program, and had complete follow-up data for 4 years. The average cholesterol level in firefighters declined from 224 mg/dL at baseline (1996-1997) to 214 mg/dL at the follow-up examination (P < 0.0001). Conversely, both obesity (body mass index ≥ 30; 34% versus 40%, P = 0.008) and triglycerides (≥200 mg/dL; 27% versus 35 %, P = 0.047) increased over time. The proportion of firefighters taking lipid-lowering medications increased from 3% at baseline to 12% at follow-up (P < 0.0001). Cholesterol levels declined significantly, and treatment rates for elevated cholesterol increased over time. Despite repeated examinations, a considerable number of firefighters had persistently elevated cholesterol, and only a minority were receiving adequate treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)840-846
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine
Volume44
Issue number9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2002
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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