Smoking and morbidity frequency in a working population

Shan P. Tsai, Sally R. Cowles, Charles E. Ross

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


As part of Shell’s health surveillance program, morbidity frequency and severity by smoking status (current smoker, exsmoker, nonsmoker) were compared for the 3-year period 1985 through 1987. Morbidity data for this study were extracted from the morbidity section of the Shell Health Surveillance System, which included all illness and absence events in excess of 5 days. Statistically significant positive associations were seen between smoking habits and overall morbidity, diseases of the circulatory system, and diseases of the respiratory system for both male and female employees. In addition, a significantly increased association between smoking and both non-motor vehicle accidents and motor vehicle accidents among current smokers was noted. Current smokers had a greater than 60% higher frequency rate (P <.05) for non-motor vehicle accidents than nonsmokers for both men and women. Male smokers also had a 75% increased (P <.05) motor vehicle accident rate. These results suggest that it may be possible to reduce overall illness and injury morbidity through implementation of successful smoking cessation programs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)245-249
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Occupational Medicine
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1990
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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