Combined effects of noise and shift work on fatigue as a function of age

Int J Occup Saf Ergon. 2008;14(4):387-94. doi: 10.1080/10803548.2008.11076779.


The study was conducted to analyse possible interactions between noise and shift work, and fatigue as a function of age. In a large questionnaire survey, we assessed personal and environmental risk factors related to fatigue. Noise exposure at work (L(Aeq, 8hr)) was measured with personal noise dosimetry. The sample included 254 day and shift workers, and was divided into 2 age groups (<40- and >40-year-olds). Noise exposure had a main effect on fatigue. The highest noise exposure resulted in an increase in the fatigue level of older shift workers. The quantity of sleep mainly depended on the type of shift and age. Our data suggest that the most important factor generating fatigue could be related to industrial noise exposure, a factor which seems to aggravate work-related fatigue generated in a synergic manner by shift work and ageing. Senior workers should be prevented from cumulating those occupational stressors.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Fatigue / etiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Noise, Occupational / adverse effects*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Work Schedule Tolerance / physiology*
  • Young Adult