Vol 3: When Work is Related to Disease, What Establishes Evidence for a Causal RelationReport as inadecuate



 Vol 3: When Work is Related to Disease, What Establishes Evidence for a Causal Relation


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This article is from Safety and Health at Work, volume 3.AbstractEstablishing a causal relationship between factors at work and disease is difficult for occupational physicians and researchers. This paper seeks to provide arguments for the judgement of evidence of causality in observational studies that relate work factors to disease. I derived criteria for the judgement of evidence of causality from the following sources: the criteria list of Hill, the approach by Rothman, the methods used by International Agency for Research on Cancer IARC, and methods used by epidemiologists. The criteria are applied to two cases of putative occupational diseases; breast cancer caused by shift work and aerotoxic syndrome. Only three of the Hill criteria can be applied to an actual study. Rothman stresses the importance of confounding and alternative explanations than the putative cause. IARC closely follows Hill, but they also incorporate other than epidemiological evidence. Applied to shift work and breast cancer, these results have found moderate evidence for a causal relationship, but applied to the aerotoxic syndrome, there is an absence of evidence of causality. There are no ready to use algorithms for judgement of evidence of causality. Criteria from different sources lead to similar results and can make a conclusion of causality more or less likely.



Author: Verbeek, Jos

Source: https://archive.org/



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