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Validation of a light questionnaire with real-life photopic illuminance measurements: the Harvard Light Exposure Assessment questionnaire.

Authors
Bajaj-A; Rosner-B; Lockley-SW; Schernhammer-ES
Source
Cancer Epidemiol Biomark Prev 2011 Jul; 20(7):1341-1349
NIOSHTIC No.
20039935
Abstract
BACKGROUND: Shift work, which necessitates light exposure at night, is now considered a probable carcinogen. To study the effects of light on chronic diseases like cancer, methods to measure light exposure in large observational studies are needed. We aimed to investigate the validity of self-reported current light exposure. METHODS: We developed a self-administered semiquantitative light questionnaire, the Harvard Light Exposure Assessment (H-LEA) questionnaire, and compared photopic scores derived from this questionnaire with actual photopic and circadian measures obtained from a real-life 7-day light meter application among 132 women (85 rotating night shift workers and 47 day workers) participating in the Nurses' Health Study II. RESULTS: After adjustment for age, body mass index (BMI), collection day, and night work status, the overall partial Spearman correlation between self-report of light exposure and actual photopic light measurements was 0.72 (P < 0.001; Kendall t = 0.57) and 0.73 (P < 0.0001; Kendall t = 0.58) when correlating circadian light measurements. There were only minimal differences in accuracy of self-report of light exposure and photopic or "circadian" light measurement between day (r = 0.77 and 0.78, respectively) and rotating night shift workers (r = 0.68 and 0.69, respectively). CONCLUSIONS: The results of this study provide evidence of the criterion validity of self-reported light exposure using the H-LEA questionnaire. IMPACT: This questionnaire is a practical method of assessing light exposure in large-scale epidemiologic studies
Keywords
Humans; Men; Women; Lighting-systems; Lighting; Questionnaires; Optical-aids; Physiological-factors; Workers; Shift-work; Shift-workers
Contact
Eva S. Schernhammer, Channing Laboratory, 181 Longwood Avenue, Boston, MA 02115
CODEN
CEBPE4
Publication Date
20110701
Document Type
Journal Article
Email Address
eva.schernhammer@channing.harvard.edu
Funding Type
Grant
Fiscal Year
2011
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
Identifying No.
Grant-Number-R01-OH-004192; Grant-Number-R01-OH-008171; B11232011
Issue of Publication
7
ISSN
1055-9965
Source Name
Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention
State
IL; MA; OH
Performing Organization
University of Illinois
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