ISSN : 2146-3123
E-ISSN : 2146-3131

Changes in Employment Status after Myocardial Infarction among Men
Ceyda Şahan 1, Yücel Demiral 1, Bülent Kılıç 1, Özgür Aslan 2
1Department of Public Health, Dokuz Eylül University School of Medicine, İzmir, Turkey
2Department of Cardiology, Dokuz Eylül University School of Medicine, İzmir, Turkey
DOI : 10.5152/balkanmedj.2016.150611
Pages : 419-425


Background: According to the Turkey Burden of Disease Study, 10% of the national burden of disease is attributed to cardiovascular diseases. Although the standardized coronary heart disease (CHD) rate is falling in general, CHD prevalence among young people is rising. On the other hand, as a result of increased life expectancy and higher retirement ages, the CHD rate among workers is also increasing. Therefore, work ability and return to work after diagnosis are important for population health and well-being. Socioeconomic factors and working conditions may play a key role as well as clinical conditions described in the literature that affect returning to work.

Aims: The aims of this qualitative study are exploring the changes in employment and working conditions of the patients after acute myocardial infarction (AMI) and affecting factors such as socioeconomic, personal and environmental.

Study design: Qualitative research.

Methods: The research population are fifty-three patients who are engaged in paid employment when the people have been diagnosed with myocardial infarction for the first time between 2011 and 2012 at a university hospital coronary care unit. We intended to reach the whole population. Twenty- seven patients were contacted whose phone numbers were accessible from the hospital records. Semi-structured in-depth interviews were conducted with twelve patients in a meeting room at the hospital. The interviews were tape-recorded accompanied by note-taking and the content analysis method were evaluated.

Results: While many of the participants continued to work at the same job by working less, one third of them said that they were thinking about getting an easier job if they have the opportunity. On the other hand, in most cases, there were neither assessments about their work ability, nor changes to their working conditions after AMI. They had to cope with their conditions, such as economic or psychosocial, without any support.

Conclusions: While the patients have to return to work for economic and social reasons, they expressed uncertainty about working after a diagnosis of AMI and could not reach professional support to assess their work abilities. Therefore, specific algorithms and assessment tools to manage the return to work of AMI patients would be useful.

Keywords : Employment, myocardial infarction, return to work, working conditions
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