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   2015| January-February  | Volume 17 | Issue 74  
    Online since January 19, 2015

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Long-term noise exposure and the risk for type 2 diabetes: A meta-analysis
Angel Mario Dzhambov
January-February 2015, 17(74):23-33
DOI:10.4103/1463-1741.149571  PMID:25599755
Diabetes mellitus is one of the leading causes for disability and mortality in modern societies. Apart from personal factors its incidence might be influenced by environmental risks such as air pollution and noise. This paper reports a systematic review and meta-analysis on the risk for type 2 diabetes due to long-term noise exposure. Electronic searches in MEDLINE, EMBASE and the Internet yielded 9 relevant studies (5 for residential and 4 for occupational exposure). They were checked against a predefined list of safeguards against bias producing individual quality scores, which were then fed to MetaXL to conduct a quality effects meta-analysis. People exposed at their homes to roughly L den > 60 dB had 22% higher risk (95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.09-1.37) for type 2 diabetes in comparison to those exposed to L den < 64 dB; when studies reporting contentious exposure categories were excluded, there was still 19% risk (95% CI: 1.05-1.35) for L den = 60-70 dB versus L den < 60 dB. In occupational environment there was not significant risk (relative risk [RR] = 0.91, 95% CI: 0.78-1.06) for < 85 dB versus >85 dB. There was no heterogeneity in the two groups (I2 = 0.00). The results should be interpreted with caution due to methodological discrepancies across the studies; however, they are indicative of the close links that noise pollution might have not only to cardiovascular diseases but to endocrine dysfunction as well.
  10,276 29 26
Hearing loss associated with US military combat deployment
Timothy S Wells, Amber D Seelig, Margaret A. K. Ryan, Jason M Jones, Tomoko I Hooper, Isabel G Jacobson, Edward J Boyko
January-February 2015, 17(74):34-42
DOI:10.4103/1463-1741.149574  PMID:25599756
The objective of this study was to define the risk of hearing loss among US military members in relation to their deployment experiences. Data were drawn from the Millennium Cohort Study. Self-reported data and objective military service data were used to assess exposures and outcomes. Among all 48,540 participants, 7.5% self-reported new-onset hearing loss. Self-reported hearing loss showed moderate to substantial agreement (k = 0.57-0.69) with objective audiometric measures. New-onset hearing loss was associated with combat deployment (adjusted odds ratio [AOR] = 1.63, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.49-1.77), as well as male sex and older age. Among deployers, new-onset hearing loss was also associated with proximity to improvised explosive devices (AOR = 2.10, 95% CI = 1.62-2.73) and with experiencing a combat-related head injury (AOR = 6.88, 95% CI = 3.77-12.54). These findings have implications for health care and disability planning, as well as for prevention programs.
  10,007 25 23
Noise levels in an urban Asian school environment
Karen M.K. Chan, Chi Mei Li, Estella P.M. Ma, Edwin M.L. Yiu, Bradley McPherson
January-February 2015, 17(74):48-55
DOI:10.4103/1463-1741.149580  PMID:25599758
Background noise is known to adversely affect speech perception and speech recognition. High levels of background noise in school classrooms may affect student learning, especially for those pupils who are learning in a second language. The current study aimed to determine the noise level and teacher speech-to-noise ratio (SNR) in Hong Kong classrooms. Noise level was measured in 146 occupied classrooms in 37 schools, including kindergartens, primary schools, secondary schools and special schools, in Hong Kong. The mean noise levels in occupied kindergarten, primary school, secondary school and special school classrooms all exceeded recommended maximum noise levels, and noise reduction measures were seldom used in classrooms. The measured SNRs were not optimal and could have adverse implications for student learning and teachers' vocal health. Schools in urban Asian environments are advised to consider noise reduction measures in classrooms to better comply with recommended maximum noise levels for classrooms.
  9,619 25 13
Effects of noise and acoustics in schools on vocal health in teachers
Lady Catherine Cantor Cutiva, Alex Burdorf
January-February 2015, 17(74):17-22
DOI:10.4103/1463-1741.149569  PMID:25599754
Previous studies on the influence of noise and acoustics in the classroom on voice symptoms among teachers have exclusively relied on self-reports. Since self-reported physical conditions may be biased, it is important to determine the role of objective measurements of noise and acoustics in the presence of voice symptoms. To assess the association between objectively measured and self-reported physical conditions at school with the presence of voice symptoms among teachers. In 12 public schools in Bogotα, we conducted a cross-sectional study among 682 Colombian school workers at 377 workplaces. After signed the informed consent, participants filled out a questionnaire on individual and work-related conditions and the nature and severity of voice symptoms in the past month. Short-term environmental measurements of sound levels, temperature, humidity, and reverberation time were conducted during visits at the workplaces, such as classrooms and offices. Logistic regression analysis was used to determine associations between work-related factors and voice symptoms. High noise levels outside schools (odds ratio [OR] = 1.83; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.12-2.99) and self-reported poor acoustics at the workplace (OR = 2.44; 95% CI: 1.88-3.53) were associated with voice symptoms. We found poor agreement between the objective measurements and self-reports of physical conditions at the workplace. This study indicates that noise and acoustics may play a role in the occurrence of voice symptoms among teachers. The poor agreement between objective measurements and self-reports of physical conditions indicate that these are different entities, which argue for inclusion of physical measurements of the working environment in studies on the influence of noise and acoustics on vocal health.
  7,707 25 18
Dose - response relationship between noise exposure and the risk of occupational injury
Jin-Ha Yoon, Jeong-Suk Hong, Jaehoon Roh, Chi-Nyon Kim, Jong-Uk Won
January-February 2015, 17(74):43-47
DOI:10.4103/1463-1741.149578  PMID:25599757
Many workers worldwide experience fatality and disability caused by occupational injuries. This study examined the relationship between noise exposure and occupational injuries at factories in Korea. A total of 1790 factories located in northern Gyeonggi Province, Korea was evaluated. The time-weighted average levels of dust and noise exposure were taken from Workplace Exposure Assessment data. Apart occupational injuries, sports events, traffic accidents, and other accidents occurring outside workplaces were excluded. The incidences of occupational injury in each factory were calculated by data from the Korea Workers' Compensation and Welfare Services. Workplaces were classified according to the incidence of any occupational injuries (incident or nonincident workplaces, respectively). Workplace dust exposure was classified as <1 or ≥1 mg/m 3 , and noise exposure as <80, 80-89, or >90 dB. Workplaces with high noise exposure were significantly associated with being incident workplaces, whereas workplaces with high dust exposure were not. The odds ratios (95% confidence intervals) derived from a logistic regression model were 1.68 (1.27-2.24) and 3.42 (2.26-5.17) at 80-89 dB and ≥90 dB versus <80 dB. These associations remained significant when in a separate analysis according to high or low dust exposure level. Noise exposure increases the risk of occupational injury in the workplace. Furthermore, the risk of occupational injury increases with noise exposure level in a dose-response relationship. Therefore, strategies for reducing noise exposure level are required to decrease the risk of occupational injury.
  6,931 23 8
The effects of auditive and visual settings on perceived restoration likelihood
Helena Jahncke, Karolina Eriksson, Sanna Naula
January-February 2015, 17(74):1-10
DOI:10.4103/1463-1741.149559  PMID:25599752
Research has so far paid little attention to how environmental sounds might affect restorative processes. The aim of the present study was to investigate the effects of auditive and visual stimuli on perceived restoration likelihood and attitudes towards varying environmental resting conditions. Assuming a condition of cognitive fatigue, all participants (N = 40) were presented with images of an open plan office and urban nature, each under four sound conditions (nature sound, quiet, broadband noise, office noise). After the presentation of each setting/sound combination, the participants assessed it according to restorative qualities, restoration likelihood and attitude. The results mainly showed predicted effects of the sound manipulations on the perceived restorative qualities of the settings. Further, significant interactions between auditive and visual stimuli were found for all measures. Both nature sounds and quiet more positively influenced evaluations of the nature setting compared to the office setting. When office noise was present, both settings received poor evaluations. The results agree with expectations that nature sounds and quiet areas support restoration, while office noise and broadband noise (e.g. ventilation, traffic noise) do not. The findings illustrate the significance of environmental sound for restorative experience.
  6,593 23 14
Is rosuvastatin protective against on noise-induced oxidative stress in rat serum?
Emine Rabia Koc, Alevtina Ersoy, Atilla Ilhan, Haydar Ali Erken, Semsettin Sahın
January-February 2015, 17(74):11-16
DOI:10.4103/1463-1741.149565  PMID:25599753
Noise, one of the main components of modern society, has become an important environmental problem. Noise is not only an irritating sound, but also a stress factor leading to serious health problems. In this study, we have investigated possible effects of rosuvastatin, a 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-coenzyme A reductase inhibitor, thought to have an antioxidant effect, on noise-induced oxidative stress in the serum of rat models. Thirty-two male Wistar albino rats were used. In order to ease their adaptation, 2 weeks before the experiment, the rats were divided into four groups (with eight rats per each group): Noise exposure plus rosuvastatin usage, only noise exposure, only rosuvastatin usage and control. After the data had been collected, oxidant (Malondialdehyde, nitric oxide [NO], protein carbonyl [PC]) and antioxidant (superoxide dismutase [SOD], glutathione peroxidase [GSH-PX], catalase [CAT]) parameters were analyzed in the serum. Results indicated that SOD values were found to be significantly lower, while PC values in serum were remarkably higher in the group that was exposed to only noise. GSH-Px values in serum dramatically increased in the group on which only rosuvastatin was used. During noise exposure, the use of rosuvastatin caused significantly increased CAT values, whereas it resulted in reduced PC and NO values in serum. In conclusion, our data show that noise exposure leads to oxidative stress in rat serum; however, rosuvastatin therapy decreases the oxidative stress caused by noise exposure.
  5,509 20 2