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Table 1 Characteristics of the participants in the random working population sample and the sick-listed sample (n = 5807), for women and men, respectively

From: Explaining the social gradient in sickness absence: a study of a general working population in Sweden

  Women Men
n = 3547 n = 2260
  Sick-listed sample Pearson’s Chi square1 Random working population sample Sick-listed sample Pearson’s Chi square1 Random working population sample
n = 2022   n = 1525 n = 1022   n = 1238
   Chisq.    Chisq.  
% (n) Value % (n) % (n) Value % (n)
Years old       
 19 – 30 10 (208) 23.91* 15 (224) 12 (125) 47.75* 17 (215)
 31 – 50 47 (953)   49 (751) 40 (412)   49 (610)
 51 – 64 43 (861)   36 (550) 48 (485)   34 (413)
Land of birth       
 Nordic countries 92 (1857) 3.23 93 (1425) 88 (896) 7.10* 91 (1128)
 Other 8 (165)   7 (100) 12 (126)   9 (110)
 Socioeconomic position       
 Higher non-manual 11 (227) 86.89* 16 (234) 11 (106) 101.23* 21(257)
 Intermediate non-manual 27 (550)   30 (447) 16 (158)   24 (290)
 Lower non-manual 15 (291)   18 (265) 7 (67)   9 (290)
 Skilled manual 21 (425)   17 (252) 29 (288)   21 (249)
 Non-skilled manual 26 (511)   20 (303) 38 (383)   26 (312)
Employer       
 Private/self-employed 30 (567) 36.52* 40 (576) 71 (672) 3.20 73 (856)
 Public 70 (1332)   60 (855) 29 (269)   27 (317)
Physical and mental symptoms       
 Very low level 11 (202) 171.75* 21 (288) 23 (215) 109.94* 34 (365)
 Low level 19 (348)   27 (373) 22 (207)   30 (326)
 High level 29 (552)   30 (415) 26 (243)   24 (267)
 Very high level 41 (763)   22 (294) 29 (272)   12 (127)
Mental well-being       
 Very good 18 (325) 82.28* 25 (363) 23 (212) 77.57* 30 (345)
 Good 25 (461)   32 (458) 24 (218)   35 (407)
 Low 26 (477)   24 (341) 27 (247)   22 (258)
 Very low 31 (564)   19 (269) 26 (241)   13 (158)
Job strain       
 Low 80 (1613) 47.63* 88 (1349) 83 (844) 45.27* 92 (1138)
 High 20 (409)   12 (176) 17 (178)   8 (100)
Heavy lifting       
 No, never/almost never 23 (459) 75.36* 32 (483) 16 (164) 107.51* 31 (383)
 No, seldom 19 (387)   24 (354) 18 (178)   23 (276)
 Yes, sometimes 25 (491)   23 (350) 29 (288)   25 (312)
 Yes, frequently 33 (656)   21 (320) 37 (367)   21 (255)
Awkward working postures       
 No, never/almost never 20 (397) 90.79* 27 (412) 16 (153) 115.49* 31 (374)
 No, seldom 19 (384)   25 (376) 19 (191)   24 (300)
 Yes, sometimes 27 (531)   27 (413) 28 (279)   24 (296)
 Yes, frequently 34 (673)   20 (303) 37 (371)   21 (256)
  1. *Statistically significant difference (p < .05), between the sick-listed sample and the random working population sample.
  2. 1 Chi square value for the distributional comparison between the sick-listed sample and the random working population sample.