Navigation Links
Many stressors associated with fracking due to perceived lack of trust, Pitt finds

PITTSBURGH, April 29, 2013 Pennsylvania residents living near unconventional natural gas developments using hydraulic fracturing, known by the slang term "fracking," attribute several dozen health concerns and stressors to the Marcellus Shale developments in their area, according to a long-term analysis by University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health researchers.

Reported health impacts persist and increase over time, even after the initial drilling activity subsides, they noted. The study, which will be published in the May issue of the International Journal of Occupational and Environmental Health, did not include clinical examinations of the participants' physical health or any environmental tests. Researchers surveyed those who believe their health has been affected by hydraulic fracturing activities for self-reported symptoms and stressors. The most commonly cited concern was stress, which 76 percent of participants said they'd experienced. Among the leading causes of stress reported by the participants were feelings of being taken advantage of, having their concerns and complaints ignored, and being denied information or misled.

"Many of these stressors can be addressed immediately by the gas drilling industry and by government," said senior author Bernard Goldstein, M.D., emeritus professor and former dean of Pitt Public Health.

"Scientific literature shows that if people do not trust companies doing work in their communities, or believe that the government is misleading them, there is a heightened perception of risk," said Dr. Goldstein, also a member of the National Academies' committees to investigate shale gas drilling in the U.S. and Canada. "Community disruption and psychosocial stress have been well-documented as a result of environmental issues like oil spills and superfund sites. A strong response by the Pennsylvania Department of Health to address concerns about health impacts of hydrofracturing could reduce observed stress and resulting symptoms."

From May through October 2010, members of Pitt Public Health's Center for Healthy Environments and Communities conducted in-depth interviews with 33 people concerned about fracking in their communities. Three- quarters of the residents resided in five of the seven most heavily drilled counties in Pennsylvania.

Follow-up interviews were conducted from January through April 2012 and included 20 of the initial 33 participants. The remainder could not be reached or declined to participate.

"Our study shows that perceptions of health may be affected by fracking regardless of whether this health impact is due to direct exposure to chemical and physical agents resulting from drilling or to the psychosocial stressors of living near drilling activity," said lead author Kyle Ferrar, M.P.H., a doctoral student at Pitt Public Health. "Comprehensive epidemiological studies of all potential adverse consequences of fracking need to be performed, and they should include a close look at psychosocial symptoms, including stress, which cause very real health complications."

Participants reported 59 unique health issues that they attributed to Marcellus Shale development. In addition to stress, these perceived health issues included rashes, headaches, shortness of breath, nausea and sore throats.

"Exposure-based epidemiological studies are needed to address identified health impacts and those that may develop as fracking continues," said Mr. Ferrar.


Contact: Allison Hydzik
University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences

Related biology news :

1. Mount Sinai study identifies new gene variations associated with heart rate
2. Eating fish associated with lower risk of dying among older adults
3. International consortium discovers seven new genomic regions associated with AMD
4. Mechanisms regulating inflammation associated with type 2 diabetes, cancer identified
5. New study indicates avocado consumption may be associated with better diet quality
6. Genome-wide imaging study identifies new gene associated with Alzheimers plaques
7. Gene associated with high anxiety can have protective effect on the battlefield
8. Detrimental effect of obesity on lesions associated with Alzheimers disease
9. Low vitamin D levels in pregnancy associated with lower birth weights, pitt research finds
10. Wandering minds associated with aging cells
11. Diet high in total antioxidants associated with lower risk of myocardial infarction in women
Post Your Comments:
(Date:10/29/2015)... ANN ARBOR, Mich. , Oct. 29, 2015 ... with Eurofins Genomics for U.S. distribution of its ... DNA-seq kit and Rubicon,s new ThruPLEX Plasma-seq ... DNA to enable the preparation of NGS libraries ... in plasma for diagnostic and prognostic applications in ...
(Date:10/27/2015)... , Oct. 27, 2015 In the ... issues of concern for various industry verticals such as ... due to the growing demand for secure & simplified ... various ,sectors, such as hacking of bank accounts, misuse ... electronic equipment such as PC,s, laptops, and smartphones are ...
(Date:10/26/2015)... LAS VEGAS , Oct. 26, 2015 ... an innovator in modern authentication and a founding member ... launch of its latest version of the Nok Nok™ ... to use standards-based authentication that supports existing and emerging ... Suite is ideal for organizations deploying customer-facing applications that ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... 01, 2015 , ... RURO, Inc., a leading LIMS, and ... colony management software solution, ezColony®, is now available as a subscription-based, cloud-hosted software ... , Many organizations are moving to cloud-hosting for LIMS and other ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... December 01, 2015 , ... ... global meeting this month and Dr. J. Kyle Mathews will join ... includes the new single site hysterectomy. , An experienced urogynecologist, founder of Plano ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... MIAMI (PRWEB) , ... November 30, 2015 , ... ... opening of a new, Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) 10000 in the Santiago Marriott. ... technologies available, and is operated by a world-class team of qualified medical researchers ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... 2015  Culprits beware, a University at Albany ... Halámek, is taking crime scene fingerprint identification to ... -->   --> ... --> --> Halámek and his ... straightforward concept for identifying whether a culprit is ...
Breaking Biology Technology: