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This study examined the association between psychological distress and the risk of withdrawing from hypertension treatment (HTTx) 1 year after the earthquake disaster in the coastal area affected by the Great East Japan Earthquake (GEJE).
Using cross-sectional data from 2012, we studied people over 20 years of age living in Shichigahama Town, Miyagi, on the northeastern coast of Japan, which had been severely inundated by the tsunami that followed the GEJE in 2011. A total of 1014 subjects were categorized as in need of HTTx. Withdrawing from HTTx was assessed by using a self-reported questionnaire.
Subjects with a higher degree of psychological distress (Kessler-6 [K6] score ≥ 13) exhibited a significantly higher risk of withdrawing from HTTx, compared with subjects with a lower degree of psychological distress (K6 score ≤ 12; odds ratio=4.0; 95% confidence interval: 1.3-10.6, P<0.01).
This study indicated that psychological distress is a risk factor for withdrawing from HTTx in post-disaster settings. Our data suggested that the increased risk of withdrawing from HTTx associated with post-disaster psychological distress may underlie the increased prevalence of vascular diseases after the earthquake disaster in coastal areas affected by the tsunami. (Disaster Med Public Health Preparedness. 2017;11:179–182)
The Great East Japan Earthquake of March 11, 2011 may have influenced the long-term health of those in the disaster area. It is important to collect current and future health information of the people living in the post-disaster area to provide appropriate health support and quality-oriented care. However, public perceptions of health and genomic studies in the Great East Japan Earthquake disaster area are still unknown.
A questionnaire survey was conducted in one town affected by the Great East Japan Earthquake and subsequent tsunami. The results of the questionnaire were tailed and the differences in responses to each question were assessed by sex and age.
In 284 eligible people (137 men, 147 women), almost all participants agreed to join a health survey investigating the adverse effects of the disaster, and over 80% of the total participants agreed to genomic analysis. Over 70% of the participants wanted to receive pharmacogenetic testing and to receive feedback on which medications were suitable or unsuitable for them.
Most people living in the disaster area are interested in health surveys. Most of the participants also showed interest in genomic analysis.
IshikuroM, NakayaN, ObaraT, SatoY, MetokiH, KikuyaM, TsuchiyaN, NakamuraT, NagamiF, KuriyamaS, HozawaA, the ToMMo Study Group. Public Attitudes toward an Epidemiological Study with Genomic Analysis in the Great East Japan Earthquake Disaster Area. Prehosp Disaster Med. 2016;31(3):330–334.
Physical disease patients are known to experience high levels of psychological distress. This study examined the association between the medical treatment of physical diseases and psychological distress in the coastal area affected by the Great East Japan Earthquake.
Using cross-sectional data, we studied 3032 individuals aged ≥40 years who lived in Shichigahama, Miyagi, Japan. We examined the associations between 8 medical treatments for physical diseases and psychological distress, defined as Kessler Psychological Distress scale score ≥13 of 24 points. To investigate the associations, we performed multiple logistic regression analyses.
There were statistically significant associations between psychological distress and medical treatments for myocardial infarction/angina pectoris (odds ratio [OR]=1.8, 95% confidence interval [CI]=1.0-3.0) and liver disease (OR=3.1, 95% CI=1.0-7.7). The other 4 medical treatments for physical diseases had ORs of 1.3 or higher and were positively associated with psychological distress: cancer, hyperlipidemia, kidney disease, and diabetes mellitus. The degree of damage to homes did not affect the association between most of the medical treatments for physical diseases and psychological distress.
In the disaster area, most of the medical treatments for physical diseases had positive associations with psychological distress, irrespective of the degree of damage to homes. (Disaster Med Public Health Preparedness. 2015;9:374–381)
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