Association of job-related stress factors with psychological and somatic symptoms among Japanese hospital nurses: effect of departmental environment in acute care hospitals

J Occup Health. 2008;50(1):79-85. doi: 10.1539/joh.50.79.


The present study examined degrees of job-related stress factors as well as mental and physical symptoms among Japanese hospital nurses in various departments, and clarified associations of departments and job-related stress factors with those symptoms. A self-administered anonymous questionnaire was distributed to 1,882 full-time nurses at four acute care hospitals in Japan. The survey included demographic factors, and the Brief Job Stress Questionnaire. Among 1,599 nurses who completed all items relevant to the present study, we analyzed data from 1,551 female nurses. The results show that working in operating rooms was associated with fatigue, that working in intensive care units (ICU) was associated with anxiety, and that working in surgery and internal medicine was associated with anxiety and depression independently of demographic factors and job-related stress factors. The physical and mental health of nurses might affect their time off, quality of nursing care and patient satisfaction in acute care hospitals. Therefore, job-related stress factors should be minimized, to improve the physical and mental health of nurses, considering unique departmental demands.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cohort Studies
  • Data Collection
  • Fatigue / etiology
  • Female
  • Health Status
  • Humans
  • Japan
  • Job Satisfaction
  • Mental Disorders / etiology*
  • Middle Aged
  • Nurses / psychology*
  • Nursing Staff, Hospital
  • Occupational Diseases / psychology*
  • Psychiatric Status Rating Scales
  • Stress, Psychological / complications
  • Stress, Psychological / etiology*
  • Work Schedule Tolerance / psychology
  • Workplace / psychology*