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Bad Bosses Are Hard on the Heart
Date:11/25/2008

Study ties work woes to fatal cardiovascular events in men

TUESDAY, Nov. 25 (HealthDay News) -- Burdened by an overbearing boss? Your heart may pay the price, according to new research.

The Swedish study found that workers' risks for angina, heart attack and death rose along with the reported incompetence of their bosses.

"This study is the first to provide evidence of a prospective, dose-response relationship between concrete managerial behaviors and objectively assessed heart disease among employees," said lead researcher Anna Nyberg, from the department of public health sciences at the Karolinska Institute, and Stress Research Institute at Stockholm University.

"Enhancing managers' skills -- regarding providing employees with information, support, power in relation to responsibilities, clarity in expectations, and feedback -- could have important stress-reducing effects on employees and enhance the health at workplaces," Nyberg said.

The report was published in the Nov. 25 online edition of Occupational and Environmental Medicine.

According to the researchers, being a good boss includes consideration for employees, setting clear goals, setting realistic expectations, communicating and giving feedback, managing change, including people in decision-making and delegating authority.

For the study, Nyberg's team collected data on more than 3,100 Swedish men who participated in the Work, Lipids, and Fibrinogen Stockholm study. The men, 19 to 70 years of age, had their hearts checked at work between 1992 and 1995. The researchers then matched these men with hospital records for heart disease illness and death up to 2003.

During the follow-up period, there were 74 cases of fatal and nonfatal heart attacks or angina or death from heart disease, the researchers found.

Nyberg's group found that the more competent the men thought their bosses were, the lower their ris
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