Employment changes among patients following coronary bypass surgery: social, medical, and psychological correlates.
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Employment changes among patients following coronary bypass surgery: social, medical, and psychological correlates.

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  • English

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      Public Health Rep
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      The relations of socioeconomic and psychological factors to resumption of employment following coronary artery bypass surgery were studied using a questionnaire returned by a sample of 426 men and 70 women. The sample was drawn from the membership of Mended Hearts, Inc., a nationwide voluntary organization of persons who have had heart surgery. Preoperatively, more men (92 percent) than women (59 percent) were employed. Return to work rates were high for men (81 percent) and much lower for women (58 percent). The 395 men tended to return to work an average of 3.7 months after surgery whereas the 41 women took an average of 4.8 months. Return to work following surgery was most clearly related to socioeconomic level for both sexes. In addition, for men, those most likely to return had less postoperative morbidity and held jobs requiring little physical exertion. Patients who reported that they were forced into an early retirement represent a particularly vulnerable group in that they were more likely to experience the most postoperative morbidity. As a group, they believed that their physicians had least prepared them to return to work, and they experienced the poorest emotional adjustment. Thus, women and those forced into early retirement represent two potentially high-risk groups of patients who would seem to require additional clinical and psychological management following surgery.
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