Disclosure: The authors have no conflicts of interest to report.
Brief Cutting Edge Reports
Obesity and incident injury among career firefighters in the central United States
Article first published online: 13 JUN 2013
Copyright © 2013 The Obesity Society
Volume 21, Issue 8, pages 1505–1508, August 2013
How to Cite
Jahnke, S.A., Poston, W.S.C., Haddock, C.K. and Jitnarin, N. (2013), Obesity and incident injury among career firefighters in the central United States. Obesity, 21: 1505–1508. doi: 10.1002/oby.20436
- Issue published online: 22 AUG 2013
- Article first published online: 13 JUN 2013
- Accepted manuscript online: 20 MAR 2013 02:27AM EST
- Manuscript Accepted: 10 FEB 2013
- Manuscript Received: 27 NOV 2012
Firefighting is a dangerous profession with high injury rates, particularly musculoskeletal (MS), but limited longitudinal data is available to examine predictors of MS injuries in this population.
Design and Methods
The relationship between personal individual, nonoccupational factors (e.g., demographic characteristics, body composition, fitness, and health behaviors) and incident injury and incident MS injury in a prospective cohort of 347 firefighters from the central United States was examined.
Baseline weight status was a significant predictor of incident MS injury, with obese (BMI ≥ 30 kg m−2) firefighters 5.2 times more likely (95% CI = 1.1-23.4) to experience a MS injury than their normal weight (BMI = 18.5-24.9 kg m−2) colleagues over the course of the study. Similarly, firefighters who were obese based on WC (>102.0 cm) were almost three times as likely (OR = 2.8, 95% CI = 1.2-6.4) to have a MS injury at follow-up.
Findings highlight the importance of focusing on firefighters' body composition, nutrition and fitness as a means of decreasing risk for injury.