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Table 1 General characteristics of study participants

From: Comparison of facet joint degeneration in firefighters and hospital office workers

Variables Firefighters(N = 341) Office workers(N = 80) p-value
n % n %
Age (years) 20–29 89 26.0 20 25 0.832
30–39 96 28.4 20 25  
40–49 86 25.1 20 25  
50–59 70 20.5 20 25  
Height (cm) Mean ± SD 174.0 ± 5.12 174.7 ± 10.43 0.391
Weight (kg) Mean ± SD 74.0 ± 8.11 74.2 ± 10.11 0.376
BMI Mean ± SD 24.4 ± 2.49 25.0 ± 3.12 0.137
Physical exercise(times/week) <1 112 32.9 23 28.8 0.703
1~2 113 33.1 30 37.5  
≥3 116 34.0 27 33.7  
Duration of
employment(years)
<5 112 32.8 21 26.2 0.771
5–9 48 14.1 14 17.5  
10–14 32 9.4 8 10.0  
15–19 51 15.0 11 13.8  
≥20 98 28.7 26 32.5  
Alcohol consumption Healthy drinker 93 27.2 15 18.8 0.116
High
risk drinker
248 72.8 65 81.2  
Smoking status Non-smoker 119 34.9 31 38.7 0.397
Ex-smoker 121 35.5 22 27.5  
Current smoker 101 29.6 27 33.8  
Episode of back pain No 109 31.9 36 45.0 0.027
Yes 232 68.1 44 55.0  
  1. SD standard deviation, BMI body mass index, Episode of back pain: 1 day with complaint from the lower back during the previous 1 year; Physical exercise: the number of exercises for more than 30 minutes per week; Healthy drinker: drink less than 72 grams of alcohol per week; High risk drinker: drink more than 72 grams of alcohol per week