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Health problems of victims before and after disaster: a longitudinal study in general practice.
Int J Epidemiol 2005; 34(4):820-6IJ

Abstract

BACKGROUND

We aimed to quantify the health problems and to assess the possible risk factors for developing health problems in persons affected by the explosion of a firework depot at Enschede, The Netherlands, on May 13, 2000. The explosion considerably damaged buildings in the local neighbourhood and caused 22 immediate deaths and injuries in over 1000 people.

METHODS

A longitudinal study of (89% of all) victims (n = 9329) and controls (n = 7392) with pre-disaster baseline morbidity for 16 months and post-disaster data for 2.5 years was conducted using the electronic medical records of general practitioners. Symptoms and diagnoses were recorded using the International Classification of Primary Care (ICPC). Prevalence rates for clusters of symptoms were compared between victim and control groups pre- and post-disaster. Risk factors for developing health problems were examined in hierarchical linear models.

RESULTS

Two and a half years post-disaster, the prevalence of psychological problems in victims who had to relocate was about double and in the non-relocated victims one-third more than controls. Victims with pre-disaster psychological problems were at a greater risk for post-disaster psychological problems. Relocated victims showed an excess of medically unexplained physical symptoms (MUPS) especially in a period of increased media attention. Both groups of victims showed some increase of gastrointestinal (GI) morbidity 2.5 years post-disaster compared with their pre-disaster rate, and compared with the control group.

CONCLUSIONS

Two and a half years post-disaster an excess of psychological problems, MUPS, and gastrointestinal morbidity was observed. Pre-disaster psychological problems and inevitable relocation were predictors of more post-disaster psychological problems.

Authors+Show Affiliations

NIVEL Netherlands Institute for Health Services Research, Utrecht, The Netherlands.No affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

Language

eng

PubMed ID

15860632

Citation

Yzermans, C Joris, et al. "Health Problems of Victims Before and After Disaster: a Longitudinal Study in General Practice." International Journal of Epidemiology, vol. 34, no. 4, 2005, pp. 820-6.
Yzermans CJ, Donker GA, Kerssens JJ, et al. Health problems of victims before and after disaster: a longitudinal study in general practice. Int J Epidemiol. 2005;34(4):820-6.
Yzermans, C. J., Donker, G. A., Kerssens, J. J., Dirkzwager, A. J., Soeteman, R. J., & ten Veen, P. M. (2005). Health problems of victims before and after disaster: a longitudinal study in general practice. International Journal of Epidemiology, 34(4), pp. 820-6.
Yzermans CJ, et al. Health Problems of Victims Before and After Disaster: a Longitudinal Study in General Practice. Int J Epidemiol. 2005;34(4):820-6. PubMed PMID: 15860632.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Health problems of victims before and after disaster: a longitudinal study in general practice. AU - Yzermans,C Joris, AU - Donker,Gé A, AU - Kerssens,Jan J, AU - Dirkzwager,Anja J E, AU - Soeteman,Rik J H, AU - ten Veen,Petra M H, Y1 - 2005/04/28/ PY - 2005/4/30/pubmed PY - 2008/1/8/medline PY - 2005/4/30/entrez SP - 820 EP - 6 JF - International journal of epidemiology JO - Int J Epidemiol VL - 34 IS - 4 N2 - BACKGROUND: We aimed to quantify the health problems and to assess the possible risk factors for developing health problems in persons affected by the explosion of a firework depot at Enschede, The Netherlands, on May 13, 2000. The explosion considerably damaged buildings in the local neighbourhood and caused 22 immediate deaths and injuries in over 1000 people. METHODS: A longitudinal study of (89% of all) victims (n = 9329) and controls (n = 7392) with pre-disaster baseline morbidity for 16 months and post-disaster data for 2.5 years was conducted using the electronic medical records of general practitioners. Symptoms and diagnoses were recorded using the International Classification of Primary Care (ICPC). Prevalence rates for clusters of symptoms were compared between victim and control groups pre- and post-disaster. Risk factors for developing health problems were examined in hierarchical linear models. RESULTS: Two and a half years post-disaster, the prevalence of psychological problems in victims who had to relocate was about double and in the non-relocated victims one-third more than controls. Victims with pre-disaster psychological problems were at a greater risk for post-disaster psychological problems. Relocated victims showed an excess of medically unexplained physical symptoms (MUPS) especially in a period of increased media attention. Both groups of victims showed some increase of gastrointestinal (GI) morbidity 2.5 years post-disaster compared with their pre-disaster rate, and compared with the control group. CONCLUSIONS: Two and a half years post-disaster an excess of psychological problems, MUPS, and gastrointestinal morbidity was observed. Pre-disaster psychological problems and inevitable relocation were predictors of more post-disaster psychological problems. SN - 0300-5771 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/15860632/Health_problems_of_victims_before_and_after_disaster:_a_longitudinal_study_in_general_practice_ L2 - https://academic.oup.com/ije/article-lookup/doi/10.1093/ije/dyi096 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -