Exposure to Metals, Pesticides Tied to CVD in Hispanics/Latinos

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Prevalence ratio for any cardiovascular disease was 2.18 for those working with pesticides.
Prevalence ratio for any cardiovascular disease was 2.18 for those working with pesticides.

HealthDay News — Occupational exposures to pesticides and metals are associated with an increased prevalence of cardiovascular disease (CVD) among Hispanics/Latinos, according to a study published online Dec. 11 in Heart.

Catherine M. Bulka, PhD, from the University of Illinois at Chicago, and colleagues analyzed cross-sectional data from 7404 employed Hispanic/Latino individuals aged 18 to 74 years. Questionnaire data were provided by participants from four US cities who underwent clinical examinations, including electrocardiograms. The authors examined the correlations of occupational exposure to organic solvents, metals, and pesticides in relation to CVD.

The researchers found that 6.5, 8.5, and 4.7% of Hispanic/Latino workers reported exposures to organic solvents, metals, and pesticides, respectively, at their current jobs. Of the participants, 6.1% had some form of CVD, most commonly coronary heart disease, which was followed by cerebrovascular disease, heart failure, and atrial fibrillation (4.3, 1, 0.8, and 0.7%, respectively). After adjustment for confounders, individuals who reported working with pesticides had prevalence ratios of 2.18 (95% confidence interval, 1.34 to 3.55), 2.2 (95% CI, 1.31 to 3.71), 1.38 (95% CI, 0.62 to 3.03), 0.91 (95% CI, 0.23 to 3.54), and 5.92 (95% CI, 1.89 to 18.61) for any CVD, coronary heart disease, cerebrovascular disease, heart failure, and atrial fibrillation, respectively. The prevalence of atrial fibrillation increased with metal exposures (prevalence ratio, 3.78 [95% CI, 1.24 to 11.46]).

"Our results do suggest occupational exposures could be important contributors to CVD for Hispanics/Latinos," the authors write.

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