Author Interviews, Environmental Risks, Heart Disease, JACC / 06.02.2018 Interview with: “Siren” by Michael Pereckas is licensed under CC BY 2.0Professor Dr. med. Thomas Muenzel Universitätsmedizin Mainz Zentrum für Kardiologie, Kardiologie I What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: The background for this review is that people more and more acknowledge that noise is not just annoying the people as reported for many years, evidence is growing that chronic noise can cause cardiovascular disease including metabolic disease such as diabetes type II and mental disease such as depression and anxiety disorders and noise impairs as well the cognitive development of children. More recent studies also provided some insight into the mechanisms underlying noise-induced vascular damage. Noise interrupts communication or sleep and thus is causing annoyance. If this occurs chronically the people develop stress characterized by increased stress hormone levels. If this persists for a long time people develop cardiovascular risk factors on tis own such as diabetes, hypercholesterolemia, one measures an increase of the blood to coagulate and the blood pressure will increase. To this end people will develop cardiovascular disease including coronary artery disease, arterial hypertension, stroke, heart failure an arrhythmia such as atrial fibrillation. So, there is no doubt that noise makes us sick ! (more…)
Author Interviews, BMJ, Hearing Loss, Heart Disease, Occupational Health / 20.09.2015

Wenqi Gan, MD, PhD Assistant Professor Department of Preventive Medicine and Environmental Health University of Kentucky College of Public Health Lexington, KY Interview with: Wenqi Gan, MD, PhD Assistant Professor Department of Preventive Medicine and Environmental Health University of Kentucky College of Public Health Lexington, KY 40536 Medical Research: What is the background for this study? Dr. Wenqi Gan: In epidemiologic studies on health effects of noise exposure, community noise is typically assessed using noise prediction models, occupational noise is assessed using self-reports or historical records. These methods are able to estimate community noise exposure in residential areas and occupational noise exposure in the workplace; however, these methods are not able to accurately reflect actual personal noise exposure in the home and workplace. The lack of personal noise exposure information is a major limitation of previous studies, which could cause underestimations of the true health effects of noise exposure. Bilateral high-frequency hearing loss, an objective indicator for long-term exposure to loud noise, may be used to investigate health effects of noise exposure. Medical Research: What are the main findings? Dr. Wenqi Gan: This study includes 5223 people aged 20-69 years who participated in the US National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 1999-2004. Compared with people with normal high-frequency hearing, people with bilateral high-frequency hearing loss were approximately two times more likely to have coronary heart disease. This association was particularly striking for people who were chronically exposed to loud noise in the workplace or leisure time. For example, for currently employed workers with occupational noise exposure history, the possibility of having coronary heart disease increased more than four times. This study confirms that chronic exposure to loud noise is associated with increased risk of coronary heart disease. (more…)