BBC health which discussed a Lancet Study. However, I was surprised at the findings. " />

Does work stress 'raise heart risk'?

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I have always believed that the more high powered the job the more stress that could increase your risk of heart problems. This study suggests that it is more common in lower skilled workers. Doctors who have a lot of decision-making in their jobs would be less likely to have job strain than someone working on a busy factory production line.

The Lancet research analysed combined data from 13 studies. They were then sorted into people with job strain or not and followed for an average of seven and a half years.

Prof Mika Kivimaki, from University College London, said: "Our findings indicate that job strain is associated with a small but consistent increased risk of experiencing a first coronary heart disease event, such as a heart attack." It appears to be related to an inability to have control of a stressful situation that causes problems.

The risk from stress at work was put in to context for me when I read that eliminating job strain would prevent 3.4% of those cases, whereas there would be a 36% reduction if everyone stopped smoking.

It appears to be how you deal with stress that is important. Having a healthy lifestyle and doing more exercise can help. Cutting down or stopping smoking may make quite a big difference.

Patricia Wakeford

Solicitor - Clinical Negligence Team

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