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Editor's Correspondence
Sep 10, 2012

It Is Also What You Do When Sitting

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliation: The Mount Sinai-Irving J. Selikoff Center for Occupational & Environmental Medicine, Department of Preventive Medicine, The Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, New York.

Arch Intern Med. 2012;172(16):1272. doi:10.1001/archinternmed.2012.2536

The article by van der Ploeg et al1 in the March 26, 2012, issue of the Archives presents further evidence of all-cause mortality risk and time spent sitting. Although the authors considered occupation as a potential confounding factor, only 1 aspect of occupation was considered, namely, time spent sitting in one's occupation. The medical literature on occupational health is replete with evidence of additional risk factors associated with one's occupation, apart from being sedentary, that adversely affect all-cause mortality. Examples of such risk factors—exclusive of workplace injuries and violence—include the following: occupational exposure to airborne particulates and incidence of stroke2; occupational stress and cardiovascular disease3; and occupational cancer-related mortality.4,5 Appropriate consideration for the potential confounding effect of occupational hazardous exposures is warranted, albeit challenging, when analyzing data on all-cause mortality.6

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