The Rural Health Study: A Comparison of Hospital Experience Between Farmers and Nonfarmers in a Rural Area of Minnesota (1976-1977)

  • Burkart, John A.;
  • Egleston, Christiane F.;
  • Voss, Richard J.


The Rural Health Study used hospital records and brief occupational histories to identify problem health areas for agricultural workers and residents in a selected area of the Midwest. A population-based analysis according to residence in two rural counties and a case-control analysis according to years of agricultural exposure was utilized.

Overall, patients with an agricultural background were healthy and slightly healthier than patients with no agricultural history. The following possible areas were identified: Males and females both showed increased risks for diseases of; blood-forming organs, osteoarthritis, gall bladder, hernia of the abdominal cavity, veins and lymphatics, and eye conditions. Male farm workers showed increased risks for benign prostatic hypertrophy and female farm workers had increased risks of uterovagi al prolapse, acute myocardial infarctions, disease of the skin and subcutaneous tissue, and neoplasms. Females over 65 years of age with 20 or more of agricultural exposure were the only farm group whose overall health was worse than the corresponding nonfarm group.

Data on smoking histories, collected for adjustment purposes, corroborated national findings.


SOURCE: Cincinnati, Ohio; 1978. n.p.


This document was extracted from the CDC-NIOSH Epidemiology of Farm Related Injuries: Bibliography With Abstracts, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health.

We are unable to supply copies of the full report cited in this entry. Readers are advised to use the following sources:

  • Author or publisher: articles are frequently available from the author or publisher.
  • Medical or other research libraries: these facilities often have the material on hand or know where it can be obtained. If available, each journal entry includes the appropriate National Library of Medicine unique identification number to aid in interlibrary loan requests.
  • Government: some U.S. Government-sponsored research reports, including ones out-of print, are available from the National Technical Information Service, U.S. Department of Commerce.

Disclaimer and Reproduction Information: Information in NASD does not represent NIOSH policy. Information included in NASD appears by permission of the author and/or copyright holder. More