Study links low job control to hypertension in men

March 6, 2013

Toronto – Men with low job control may be at higher risk for hypertension, finds a new study from the Institute for Work & Health and the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences. Job control refers to people’s ability to make decisions about how they perform their work and use their skills, according to IWH.

Researchers tracked new hypertension cases among workers 35-60 years old over a nine-year period. Almost 12 percent of participants developed high blood pressure during the study period, with the condition more common among men (21 percent) than women (18 percent), the study abstract states. More cases were linked to low job control than health behaviors such as smoking and poor diet.

When researchers adjusted for other factors influencing hypertension, they found that men with the least job control had a much higher risk of developing hypertension (27 percent) compared to men with the most job control (18 percent), according to an IWH press release. The same difference was not found among women.

The study was published online Feb. 27 in the Canadian Journal of Public Health.