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Table 1 The 37 studies that explored effects of obesity on general job-related outcomes, ordered chronologically

From: Use of various obesity measurement and classification methods in occupational safety and health research: a systematic review of the literature

  Author, Year, Origin Study Focus Study Design Subjects Sample size (%OW/OB) Outcome Variable(s) Primary Obesity Measure / Other Measure(s) Significant Obesity Effect Significant Overweight Effect Acknowledging Limitations of Obesity Measures
General physical or mental work-related functioning Lee et al.,2001, Australia [48] Asbestos exposure Secondary data analysis Former Australian mine workers 693 (68%) Pleural thickening BMI + +
Clark et al.,2002, USA [49] Duty fitness Cross-sectional Active firefighters(white) 218 (81%) EKG, VO2 max, METS BMI + + +
Poston et al.,2002, USA [50] Discharge from training Prospective cohort Airmen 32,144 (19%) Discharge status *BMI + +
Arbabi et al.,2003, USA [51] Crash injury patterns Secondary data analysis Hospital admits of car crash 189 (57%) Injury Scale and max AIS score, injury severity BMI + +
Bungum et al.,2003, USA [52] Healthcare costs, absenteeism Cross-sectional Permanent employees 506 (74%) Annual healthcare cost, absent days BMI + NA
Moreau et al.,2004, Belgium [53] Sick leave Prospective cohort Belgium workers 20,463 (57%) Sick leave BMI / WC + +
Pronk et al.,2004, USA [54] Work performance Cross-sectional Current active employees 683 (43%) # of work loss days, job performance, extra effort exerted, interpersonal relationships BMI +
Laitinen et al.,2005, Finland [55] Working ability Prospective cohort Young adults 11,637 (19%) Perceived work ability BMI / WHR + + +
Ricci & Chee,2005, USA [56] Lost productive time Cross-sectional Employed adults 7472 (58%) Self-reported lost productive time in past 2 weeks, lost labor costs BMI + +
Arena et al.,2006, USA [57] Short-term disability Retrospective cohort White collar employees 1690 (37%) Frequency + duration of short term disability BMI + +
Cormier & Israel-Assayag,2006, Canada [58] Inflammatory response Retrospective + experimental Pig farmers + general population 14 (57%) Inflammation biomarkers: C-reactive protein, interleukin 6,soluble adhesion molecules, BMI / *Girth Size NA +
Nishitani & Sakakibara,2006, Japan [59] Job stress Cross-sectional Japanese manufacturing workers 208 (32%) Job characteristics, eating behavior, BMI + NA
Wang et al.,2006, USA [60] Healthcare costs Cross-sectional Manufacturing company employee & spouses 35,932 (74%) Medical and pharmaceutical claims BMI + +
Østbye et al.,2007, USA [61] Compensation claims, costs, lost workdays Retrospective cohort Health care and university employees 11,728 (56%) Workers’ compensation claims, associated costs, and lost workdays BMI + +
Charles et al.,2007, USA [62] Hemato-logic parameters Cross-sectional Police officers 104 (78%) White blood cell and platelet counts BMI / WC,WHR, hip circumference, abdominal height, waist to height ratio + +
Finkelstein et al.,2007, USA [63] Injuries/ treatment costs Cross-sectional General population 42,304 (62%) Medically attended injury rates by mechanism and nature and related treatment costs BMI + +
Jans et al.,2007, Netherlands [64] Absenteeism Prospective cohort Employees in industrial, administrative, and service sectors 1284 (40%) Company-reported absenteeism BMI +
Gates et al.,2008, USA [65] Presenteeism Cross-sectional Manufacturing company employees 341 (78%) Work Limitations Questionnaire BMI +
Soteriades et al.,2008, USA [66] Job disability Prospective cohort Firefighters 329 (88%) Job disability BMI + +
Claessen et al.,2009, Germany [67] Work disability Prospective cohort Construction workers 16,875 (63%) # of cases BMI +
Vissers et al.,2009, Belgium [68] Whole body vibration Lab-based Premenopausal women 20 (100%) Ventilation of oxygen, carbon dioxide, heart rate *BMI / %BF: skinfold thickness + + +
Bedno et al.,2010, USA [69] Heat illness/healthcare utilization Prospective cohort Active duty US army members 9667 (57%) Heat illness incidence weight for height / %BF, BMI +
Robroek et al.,2010, Netherlands [70] Productivity loss /sick leave Cross-sectional Workers 10,624 (49%) Sick leave, self-reported productivity loss BMI +
Vincent et al.,2010, USA [71] Fear of movement Cross-sectional Patients with knee pain diagnoses 278 (73%) Fear of movement, knee function *BMI + (only morbid obesity)
Cowan et al.,2011, USA [72] Training-related overuse injuries Cross-sectional Active duty US army members 7323 (47%) Musculoskeletal injuries incidence and healthcare utilization Weight for height / %BF, BMI + NA
Poston et al.,2011, USA [73] Absenteeism Cross-sectional Career firefighters 478 (19%) Injury, and injury-related absenteeism BMI / %BF: BIA, WC + +
Haukka et al.,2012, Finland [74] Multisite musculoskeletal pain Prospective cohort Kitchen workers 385 (46%) Multisite musculoskeletal pain (3 and above out of 7) BMI +
Caberlon et al.,2013,Brazil [75] Musculoskeletal pain Cross-sectional Obesity treatment patients 95 (100%) Musculoskeletal symptoms *BMI + NA
Gubata et al.,2013, USA [76] Mental disorders Prospective cohort Active duty US army members 11,369 (40%) Onset of mental disorder *Circumference taping / BMI, weight-for-height standard, %BF
Jahnke et al.,2013, USA [77] (Musculoskeletal) injury Prospective cohort Firefighters 301 (0%) Incident injury, MS injury BMI / %BF: BIA, WC + +
Kouvonen et al.,2013, UK [78] Occupational injury Prospective cohort Finnish hospital workers 69,515 (0%) Occupational injury incident BMI + +
Lin et al.,2013, USA [79] Occupational injury Prospective cohort Civilian labor force ~ 7000 (50%) Injury at work BMI + +
Roos et al.,2013, Finland [80] Disability retirement Prospective cohort Middle aged employees 6542 (50%) Pensions register data & questionnaire BMI + NA
Van der Starre et al.,2013, Netherlands [81] Need for recovery Cross-sectional Office workers 412 (42%) Need for recovery after work BMI + +
Viester et al.,2013, Netherlands [82] Musculoskeletal symptoms/recovery Cross-sectional + longitudinal Dutch workforce 44,793, 2nd phase: 7909, (43%) Musculoskeletal symptoms BMI + +/− +
Gonzales et al.,2014, USA [83] Cognitive functionality Lab-based General population 73 (67%) Blood oxygen level-dependent response WC / BMI + NA
Smith et al.,2014, USA [84] Mental disorders Secondary data analysis Military personnel 15,195 (61%) Mental health disorders BMI + +
  1. For primary obesity measure, * indicates that the study reported mean of obesity measure for obese group. Bolded measure indicates that a cut-off other than the common cut-offs are used and underlined measure indicates that measurement has been based on self-reported data. For study subjects, bolded indicates that only females were included as subjects and underlined shows that males were the only subjects. A bolded study design indicates that obesity status had been considered as continuous variable while underlined bolded indicates that it had been considered both as a continuous and categorical variable