Is depression a risk factor for meatpacking injuries?

Lina Lander, Gary S. Sorock, Lynette M. Smith, Terry L. Stentz, Seung Sup Kim, Murray A. Mittleman, Melissa J. Perry

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: While meatpacking is a physically demanding industry, the effect of depression on risks for injury has not been studied. OBJECTIVE: To assess depressive disorders (major depression and dysthymia) using a validated screening tool administered to injured and uninjured meatpacking workers in two Midwestern plants. METHODS: Matched case-control analyses were conducted among 134 workers to evaluate the association between depressive disorder and the occurrence of laceration injury. RESULTS: Of the 268 workers, 13.8% screened positive for depressive disorder, whereas the general population prevalence estimate for depressive disorder using the same tool was 3.4%. Depressive disorder was not associated with an increased risk for injury; 17% of cases who experienced a laceration injury and 15% of uninjured controls reported depressive disorder (OR 0.81, 95% CI: 0.39-1.69). CONCLUSIONS: Evaluation of depression causes among meatpacking workers is needed to elucidate prevention and treatment strategies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)307-311
Number of pages5
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 18 2016


  • Depressive disorder
  • laceration
  • meatpacking
  • occupational

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rehabilitation
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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