Time to pregnancy among Danish laboratory technicians who were a part of the National Birth Cohort

Scand J Work Environ Health. 2005 Apr;31(2):108-14. doi: 10.5271/sjweh.857.


Objectives: The Danish National Birth Cohort was used to examine whether laboratory work was associated with reduced fecundity.

Methods: Self-reported data on laboratory work and waiting time to pregnancy (0-2, 3-5, 6-12 and > 12 months) were used for 829 female laboratory technicians interviewed in 1997-2003. Altogether 6250 female teachers formed the reference group. A discrete-time survival analysis with a complementary log-log link was applied to estimate the fecundability ratio between the exposed and unexposed women, with adjustment for maternal age, gravidity, smoking, prepregnancy body mass index, and paternal job.

Results: No difference in time to pregnancy was found between the laboratory technicians and teachers or between the laboratory technicians with different exposures. The adjusted fecundability ratio for the laboratory technicians was 0.94 [95% confidence interval (95% CI) 0.86-1.02] for all pregnancies and 0.98 (95% CI 0.86-1.13) for first pregnancies. A healthy worker effect was found for the laboratory technicians working with the work processes under study.

Conclusions: The results do not suggest that laboratory work in Denmark at present impairs female fecundity.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cohort Studies
  • Denmark / epidemiology
  • Faculty / statistics & numerical data
  • Family Planning Services
  • Female
  • Fertility / drug effects*
  • Humans
  • Laboratories / classification
  • Medical Laboratory Personnel / classification
  • Medical Laboratory Personnel / statistics & numerical data*
  • Occupational Exposure / adverse effects
  • Occupational Exposure / analysis*
  • Occupational Exposure / statistics & numerical data
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Trimester, Second
  • Risk Assessment
  • Risk Factors
  • Task Performance and Analysis
  • Time Factors