Data

Health, hormonal and stress-related studies on Australian National Antarctic Research Expeditions

Australian Antarctic Data Centre
WILLIAMS, D. LYNN ; AYTON, JEFF
Viewed: [[ro.stat.viewed]] Cited: [[ro.stat.cited]] Accessed: [[ro.stat.accessed]]
ctx_ver=Z39.88-2004&rft_val_fmt=info%3Aofi%2Ffmt%3Akev%3Amtx%3Adc&rfr_id=info%3Asid%2FANDS&rft_id=https://data.aad.gov.au/metadata/records/AADC-00066&rft.title=Health, hormonal and stress-related studies on Australian National Antarctic Research Expeditions&rft.identifier=https://data.aad.gov.au/metadata/records/AADC-00066&rft.publisher=Australian Antarctic Data Centre&rft.description=Aspects of the health of two isolated Australian communities at Mawson, Antarctica and at subantarctic Macquarie Island are examined. The social, occupational and physical characteristics of these communities are described. All medical records are analysed. Trauma represented 45% of cases at Mawson and 38% at Macquarie Island. Occupational influence on trauma is assessed, and risk factors for Antarctic expeditioners described. Monthly physiological parameters for expeditioners in each group were analysed. These revealed significant seasonal effect on body weight, skinfold thickness, blood pressure and pulse rate. Physical fitness, based on the Harvard Step Test, increased with time. Thyroid and sex hormones were studied monthly for one year at Macquarie Island. Significant seasonal effects were found. Isolated living with limited fresh food precipitated a case of nutmeg toxicity and a case of anorexia nervosa in a male. Case details, with a full anthropometric and hormonal profile of the anorexic expeditioner during weight loss, are given. Hormonal parameters of stress and depression were measured monthly on a Mawson group. Few results outside the normal range were obtained. No significant changes with time were found in the diurnal variation of salivary cortisol concentration, the Dexamethasone Suppression Test of the urinary cortisol measurements. The concentration of salivary cortisol tended to increase over the period of the experiment, and there was a significant relationship between the change in subjects' salivary cortisol levels, and the change in their tension-stress psychological questionnaire scores over time. Melatonin, a hormone produced in response to light/dark variations, was investigated in Mawson subjects. No endogenous circannual rhythm for human melatonin excretion was found in spite of extreme seasonal shifts in ambient light/dark in Antarctica. However, a significantly lower level for melatonin was found in December, which correlated with elevated depression scores on the psychological questionnaire for this month. Cell mediated immune responses using CMI Multitest revealed diminished scores and decreased total numbers of positive responses to seven antigens in Mawson subjects compared to other healthy populations in temperate regions. Mawson subjects had significantly elevated levels of anergy and hypoergy. Monthly questionnaires for anxiety, depression and tension/stress were given to Mawson expeditioners. No significant mid-winter depression effect was found. However the end of the year period of summer rebuilding and increased population was associated with a significant increase in depression. The onset of an anxiety state in an expeditioner during this period is described. Alcohol use at Macquarie Island was studied and an annual consumption of absolute alcohol of 16.29L per head calculated. Blood alcohol levels during social functions ranged from 0 to 0.22mg/dL, and on these nights 44-61% of members were intoxicated. Screening tests for alcoholism were evaluated at Mawson, and alcohol use correlated with fitness and tobacco use. Some of the difficulties associated with research in Antarctica are described. The fields in this dataset are: No. of cases of Illness and Poisoning Date Subject Cortisol Change per month Stress / Tension Month No. of Subjects Melatonin Levels Daily Sunshine Hours Antigen Pattern of Responses Number of Wintering Years Occupation Number of Winters Anxiety Depression Tension/Stress Alcohol Consumption Age Death Rate Population&rft.creator=WILLIAMS, D. LYNN &rft.creator=AYTON, JEFF &rft.date=2003&rft.coverage=northlimit=-67.6; southlimit=-67.6; westlimit=62.85; eastLimit=62.85; projection=WGS84&rft.coverage=northlimit=-67.6; southlimit=-67.6; westlimit=62.85; eastLimit=62.85; projection=WGS84&rft.coverage=northlimit=-54; southlimit=-54; westlimit=159; eastLimit=159; projection=WGS84&rft.coverage=northlimit=-54; southlimit=-54; westlimit=159; eastLimit=159; projection=WGS84&rft_rights=This data set conforms to the CCBY Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/). Please follow instructions listed in the citation reference provided at http://data.aad.gov.au/aadc/metadata/citation.cfm?entry_id=AADC-00066 when using these data.&rft_subject=health&rft_subject=PUBLIC HEALTH&rft_subject=EARTH SCIENCE&rft_subject=HUMAN DIMENSIONS&rft_subject=ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH FACTORS&rft_subject=AGE&rft_subject=ALCOHOL CONSUMPTION&rft_subject=ALCOHOL&rft_subject=DEATH RATE&rft_subject=DEPRESSION&rft_subject=ANXIETY&rft_subject=DAILY SUNSHINE HOURS&rft_subject=CORTISOL CHANGE PER MONTH&rft_subject=DATE&rft_subject=ANTIGEN&rft_subject=MELATONIN&rft_subject=MACQUARIE ISLAND&rft_subject=HEALTH&rft_subject=MAWSON&rft_subject=MEDICAL RECORDS&rft_subject=HORMONAL&rft_subject=MELATONIN LEVELS&rft_subject=NO. OF CASES OF ILLNESS AND POISONING&rft_subject=NUMBER OF WINTERING YEARS&rft_subject=NO. OF SUBJECTS&rft_subject=MONTH&rft_subject=NUMBER OF WINTERS&rft_subject=OCCUPATION&rft_subject=PATTERN OF RESPONSES&rft_subject=SUBJECT&rft_subject=POPULATION&rft_subject=STRESS&rft_subject=STRESS / TENSION&rft_subject=TENSION&rft_subject=TENSION/STRESS&rft_subject=TRAUMA&rft_subject=NOT APPLICABLE&rft_subject=FIELD SURVEYS&rft_subject=FIELD INVESTIGATION&rft_subject=OCEAN > SOUTHERN OCEAN&rft_subject=OCEAN > SOUTHERN OCEAN > MACQUARIE ISLAND&rft_subject=CONTINENT > ANTARCTICA&rft_subject=GEOGRAPHIC REGION > POLAR&rft_place=Hobart&rft.type=dataset&rft.language=English Access the data

Licence & Rights:

view details

This data set conforms to the CCBY Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/). Please follow instructions listed in the citation reference provided at http://data.aad.gov.au/aadc/metadata/citation.cfm?entry_id=AADC-00066 when using these data.

Access:

Other view details

The dataset is available for download from the provided URL. A scanned copy of the ANARE Research Note (variable quality) is also available for download from the provided URL.

Brief description

Aspects of the health of two isolated Australian communities at Mawson, Antarctica and at subantarctic Macquarie Island are examined. The social, occupational and physical characteristics of these communities are described.

All medical records are analysed. Trauma represented 45% of cases at Mawson and 38% at Macquarie Island. Occupational influence on trauma is assessed, and risk factors for Antarctic expeditioners described.

Monthly physiological parameters for expeditioners in each group were analysed. These revealed significant seasonal effect on body weight, skinfold thickness, blood pressure and pulse rate. Physical fitness, based on the Harvard Step Test, increased with time. Thyroid and sex hormones were studied monthly for one year at Macquarie Island. Significant seasonal effects were found.

Isolated living with limited fresh food precipitated a case of nutmeg toxicity and a case of anorexia nervosa in a male. Case details, with a full anthropometric and hormonal profile of the anorexic expeditioner during weight loss, are given.

Hormonal parameters of stress and depression were measured monthly on a Mawson group. Few results outside the normal range were obtained. No significant changes with time were found in the diurnal variation of salivary cortisol concentration, the Dexamethasone Suppression Test of the urinary cortisol measurements. The concentration of salivary cortisol tended to increase over the period of the experiment, and there was a significant relationship between the change in subjects' salivary cortisol levels, and the change in their tension-stress psychological questionnaire scores over time.

Melatonin, a hormone produced in response to light/dark variations, was investigated in Mawson subjects. No endogenous circannual rhythm for human melatonin excretion was found in spite of extreme seasonal shifts in ambient light/dark in Antarctica. However, a significantly lower level for melatonin was found in December, which correlated with elevated depression scores on the psychological questionnaire for this month.

Cell mediated immune responses using CMI Multitest revealed diminished scores and decreased total numbers of positive responses to seven antigens in Mawson subjects compared to other healthy populations in temperate regions. Mawson subjects had significantly elevated levels of anergy and hypoergy.

Monthly questionnaires for anxiety, depression and tension/stress were given to Mawson expeditioners. No significant mid-winter depression effect was found. However the end of the year period of summer rebuilding and increased population was associated with a significant increase in depression. The onset of an anxiety state in an expeditioner during this period is described.

Alcohol use at Macquarie Island was studied and an annual consumption of absolute alcohol of 16.29L per head calculated. Blood alcohol levels during social functions ranged from 0 to 0.22mg/dL, and on these nights 44-61% of members were intoxicated. Screening tests for alcoholism were evaluated at Mawson, and alcohol use correlated with fitness and tobacco use.

Some of the difficulties associated with research in Antarctica are described.

The fields in this dataset are:
No. of cases of Illness and Poisoning
Date
Subject
Cortisol Change per month
Stress / Tension
Month
No. of Subjects
Melatonin Levels
Daily Sunshine Hours
Antigen
Pattern of Responses
Number of Wintering Years
Occupation
Number of Winters
Anxiety
Depression
Tension/Stress
Alcohol Consumption
Age
Death Rate
Population

Issued: 2003-02-18

Data time period: 1981-01-01 to 1985-02-28

Click to explore relationships graph

62.85,-67.6

62.85,-67.6

159,-54

159,-54

text: northlimit=-67.6; southlimit=-67.6; westlimit=62.85; eastLimit=62.85; projection=WGS84

text: northlimit=-54; southlimit=-54; westlimit=159; eastLimit=159; projection=WGS84

Other Information
Identifiers