The Swedish National Board of Health decided in 1961 to undertake a general health survey in the county of Värmland and also in parts of the county of Gävleborg in Sweden, the so called Värmland Health Survey (VHS).
The survey was conducted between 1962 and 1965 in connection with the mass-screening programme of miniature photo fluorography (x-ray) of the chest. The aim of the survey was to perform a chemical mass-screening to identify pre-symptomatic disease, especially different types of CVD, malignancies and inflammatory conditions. Improved laboratory techniques and automated laboratory methods were used for screening. Simple measurements of some physical variables were also performed. The examination included a questionnaire with questions on previous hypertension, albuminuria, diabetes and anaemia or any infection during the previous three weeks. No information on diet, smoking habits, alcohol consumption or number of pregnancies was collected.
In three districts of Värmland (Arvika, Hagfors and Karlstad) and in one district of Gävleborg, (Hofors-Torsåker), inhabitants 25 years of age or older were invited to participate in the survey. Despite the age limit, a small number of individuals younger than 25 years of age also participated. All together 97,273 subjects underwent the screening, (~76% attendance in Värmland and 86% in Gästrikland).
The large amount of data collected has previously been described and used in three different projects for studying the role of sialic acid in prediction of CVD by Lindberg et a.l and Khalili et. al. The role of cholesterol in prediction of cancer has been studied by Törnberg et al..
A population-based health survey was carried out between 1962 and 1965 in the county of Värmland, Sweden. In total, 47,468 men and 48,079 women participated (mean age 48.7 years, range 22-99 years). The screening consisted of measurement of height (m), weight (kg) and blood pressure (BP; mmHg), as well as blood sampling including the determination of serum SA concentration (mg/L). All subjects have been followed in national registers until end of 2005 for in-hospital registered diagnosis. the cohort is also linked with data from the Swedish population and housing census in 1960.
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