Junichiro James Kazama
- Japan Epidemiological Association
- Journal of Epidemiology (ISSN:09175040)
- vol.32, no.6, pp.277-282, 2022-06-05 (Released:2022-06-05)
Background: The Great East Japan Earthquake and the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster forced the evacuation of residents and led to many changes in lifestyle for the evacuees. The Comprehensive Health Check was implemented to support the prevention of lifestyle-related disease and we analyzed the effect of prolonged evacuation (average of 3.0 years) on the new onset of hyper-LDL cholesterolemia.Methods: The study participants were Japanese adults living near the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in Fukushima Prefecture. Annual health checkups focusing on metabolic syndromes were conducted for persons ≥40 years by the Specific Health Checkup. Based on data from annual checkups from 2011 or 2012, we followed 18,670 participants without hyper-LDL cholesterolemia who underwent at least one other annual checkup during 2013–2015.Results: We found that the new onset of hyper-LDL cholesterolemia was 31% higher in evacuees than in non-evacuees. Evacuees had a significantly higher prevalence of obesity, hypertension, and diabetes, and higher frequency of weight change. Furthermore, logistic regression model analysis showed that the evacuation was significantly associated with the new onset of hyper-LDL cholesterolemia after adjusting age, gender, body mass index, smoking habit, alcohol consumption, diabetes, weight change, sleep deprivation, and exercise.Conclusion: The findings of the present study suggest that prolonged evacuation after a disaster is a risk factor for the new onset of hyper-LDL cholesterolemia, and lead to an increase in cardiovascular disease. It is therefore important to follow-up evacuees and recommend lifestyle changes where necessary.