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科学美国人60秒:我们的身体并不是晴雨表

所属教程:科学美国人60秒科学系列 更新:01-05
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Pain and Weather Fail to Connect

我们的身体并不是晴雨表

Are you one of those people who can tell when a storm is approaching based on your achy knees? Well, you may think you are. But a new study of more than 1.5 million seniors finds no relationship between rainfall and doctor visits for pain. The results are in the British Medical Journal.

你是那种可以根据自己的膝盖来判断暴风雨即将来临的人吗?嗯,可能你认为自己是。但一项针对150多万老年人的新研究发现,降雨和医生就诊之间没有关系。研究结果发表在《英国医学杂志》上。

The idea that our bodies are barometers for all sorts of weather-related phenomena—including changes in temperature, pressure and precipitation—is not a new one.

我们的身体是各种与天气有关的现象的晴雨表——例如温度、压力和将于——这样的想法已经不再新鲜。

“Hippocrates himself actually postulated this idea in nearly 400 B.C.” Anupam Jena, a physician and expert in health care policy at Harvard Medical School and the Massachusetts General Hospital, who led the study.

“希波克拉底实际上在公元前400年就提出了这个想法”哈佛医学院和麻省总医院卫生保健政策专家、负责这项研究的Anupam Jena说道。

“If you talk to people, I’d say millions and millions of people probably believe that things like rainfall influence symptoms of joint pain and stiffness. But if you look at the studies, there’s actually been surprisingly little evidence to suggest that is true. Most of the studies have been quite small. And we were interested in thinking about whether we could approach this question in a ‘big data’ sort of way.”

“如果你和人们交谈,我会说成数千万的人可能会相信像降雨量这样的事情会影响关节疼痛和僵硬的症状。但如果你看一下这些研究,实际上几乎没有证据表明这是真的。大多数的研究量都是相当小的。我们感兴趣的是是否可以用“大数据”的方式来解决这个问题。

He and his colleagues looked at information collected in more than 11 million visits that older Americans made to their primary care physicians. They compared these records with data on daily rainfall. And they asked: do more people report sore backs or swollen joints when the weather is inclement?

他和同事们研究了1100多万美国老年人对初级保健医生的信息。他们将这些信息与每日的降雨量数据进行比较。之后他们询问到:当天气恶劣时,会有更多人人说自己背部疼痛或者关节肿痛吗?

“And what we found is if you look at days where it rained versus days where it didn’t rain, there is no difference in the proportion of visits to a doctor that involved a complaint of joint pain or back pain.”

我们发现,下雨天与没下雨天相比较,抱怨关节疼或者背部疼痛的就医比例并没有变化。

They saw no “rain effect” even when it poured for seven days straight. And if you’re thinking, well, what if people couldn’t get an appointment until the skies cleared up…

即使连续7天大雨,他们也没有看到“降雨效应”。或许你在想,直到天放晴了,人们才能预约上……

“And if you look the week after a period of heavy rainfall, you still see no relationship. And that doesn’t mean that factors like rainfall or temperature or humidity don’t affect joint pain and symptoms of joint achiness and stiffness. But in this sort of big data approach, we didn’t find any evidence for it.”

如果观察暴雨过后一段时间,你仍看不到任何联系。这并不意味着降雨量、温度或者湿度等因素不会影响关节疼痛和僵硬的症状。但是通过大数据的处理方式,我们并没有找到两者关联的任何证据。

Of course, it could still be that the pain from rain is not enough to complain. “It could be that patients take over-the-counter pain medications once these symptoms hit, and so when they see their doctor they’re not actually in enough pain to mention it.” And the casualties of low-pressure fronts simply move on—gingerly.

当然,也可能是降雨引发的疼痛不足以抱怨。“可能是患者在这些症状发作后服用非处方止痛药,因此当他们看医生时,不怎么疼也就没有向医生提及。症状不严重的伤员们就小心翼翼的向前走。

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