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Journal of Environmental and Public Health
Volume 2012, Article ID 861219, 9 pages
Research Article

Association between Depressive Symptoms and Metabolic Syndrome in Police Officers: Results from Two Cross-Sectional Studies

1Biostatistics and Epidemiology Branch, Health Effects Laboratory Division, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Morgantown, WV 26505, USA
2Department of Community Medicine, School of Medicine, West Virginia University, Morgantown, WV 26506, USA
3College of Nursing, Washington State University, Spokane, WA 99210, USA
4Department of Social and Preventive Medicine, School of Public Health and Health Professions, State University of New York at Buffalo, Buffalo, NY 14214, USA

Received 31 May 2011; Revised 22 November 2011; Accepted 29 November 2011

Academic Editor: Habibul Ahsan

Copyright © 2012 Tara A. Hartley et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Policing is one of the most dangerous and stressful occupations and such stress can have deleterious effects on health. The purpose of this study was to examine the association between depressive symptoms and metabolic syndrome (MetSyn) in male and female police officers from two study populations, Buffalo, NY and Spokane, WA. Depressive symptoms were measured using the Center for Epidemiologic Studies-Depression (CES-D) scale. MetSyn was defined using the 2005 AHA/NHBLI guidelines. Analysis of covariance was used to describe differences in number of MetSyn components across depressive symptom categories. The number of MetSyn components increased significantly across categories of CES-D for Spokane men only (p-trend = 0.003). For each 5-unit increase in CES-D score, odds increased by 47.6% for having hypertriglyceridemia, by 51.8% for having hypertension, and by 56.7% for having glucose intolerance. Exploring this association is important since both are predictors of future chronic health problems and the results could be helpful in developing future gender-specific prevention and intervention efforts among police officers.