Occupational exposures and movement abnormalities among Japanese-American men: the Honolulu-Asia Aging Study

Neuroepidemiology. 2006;26(3):130-9. doi: 10.1159/000091178. Epub 2006 Jan 26.


Objective: The authors analyzed data on 1,049 men aged 71-93 years (excluding those with prevalent Parkinson's disease and stroke) from the Honolulu Heart Program (1965-1968) and the Honolulu-Asia Aging Study (1991-1999) to determine whether occupational exposures to pesticides, solvents, metals, manganese, and mercury during middle age were associated with 14 movement abnormalities 25 years later.

Methods: Analyses of variance and multivariate logistic regression were used to assess associations of interest.

Results: After adjustment for age, BMI, cognitive functioning, smoking, alcohol drinking, education, and physical activity, there was a positive association between abnormal 'facial expression' and the highest exposure to metals [odds ratio (OR) = 2.62; 95% confidence interval (CI) = 1.35-5.11; trend, p = 0.02], and the highest exposure to mercury (OR = 1.91; 95% CI = 1.04-3.49; trend, p = 0.03). Age was positively associated with all movement abnormalities, and cognitive function, body mass index and physical activity were inversely associated with most movement abnormalities.

Conclusion: Higher exposure to any metal, and specifically mercury, was associated with abnormal facial expression.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Asian*
  • Cohort Studies
  • Hawaii / epidemiology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Metals / adverse effects*
  • Movement Disorders / ethnology*
  • Occupational Diseases / ethnology*
  • Occupational Exposure / adverse effects*
  • Pesticides / adverse effects*
  • Prevalence
  • Solvents / adverse effects*


  • Metals
  • Pesticides
  • Solvents