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Table 3 Univariate analysis of characteristics in participants with strong or weak awareness of constipation, presented as the frequency or mean ± standard deviation (SD)

From: Background factors involved in the epidemiology of functional constipation in the Japanese population: a cross-sectional study

Items Strong awareness of constipation (n = 1362) Weak awareness of constipation (n = 1638) P value*
Residential area North (Tohoku, Hokkaido)/East (Kanto, Tokai, Koshinetsu)/West (Kinki, Chugoku, Shikoku, Kyushu), n/n/n 136/736/490 193/875/570 0.280
Age Years, (mean ± SD) 46.3 ± 12.9 46.0 ± 13.8 0.500
Sex Female, (%) 57.3 48.8 < 0.001**
BMI kg/m2 (mean ± SD) 21.4 ± 3.6 21.8 ± 3.5 0.001**
Jobs and education n n  
 Jobs, n (%) Student 15 (1.1%) 20 (1.2%) 0.850
Office worker 619 (45.4%) 750 (45.8%) 0.870
Self-employed 108 (7.9%) 129 (7.9%) > 0.999
Part-time worker 191 (14.0%) 234 (14.3%) 0.870
Retired or unemployed 190 (14.0%) 278 (17.0%) 0.030**
Homemaker 239 (17.5%) 227 (13.9%) 0.006**
 Education, n (%) Junior high school, High school 647 (47.5%) 715 (43.7%) 0.010**
Bachelor’s degree or over 712 (52.3%) 650 (39.7%) 0.020**
Past history of disease n n  
Hypertension, n (%) 161 (11.8%) 241 (14.7%) 0.020**
Type 2 diabetes mellitus, n (%) 90 (6.6%) 95 (5.8%) 0.360
Hyperlipidemia, n (%) 153 (11.2%) 185 (11.3%) > 0.999
Lesion in the stomach, duodenum or small intestine, n (%) 131 (9.6%) 160 (9.8%) 0.900
Inflammatory bowel disease, n (%) 0 0  
Hemorrhoids, n (%) 161 (11.8%) 234 (14.3%) 0.051
Diverticulum, n (%) 11 (0.8%) 24 (1.5%) 0.120
Gastrointestinal cancer, n (%) 0 0  
Cerebrovascular disease, n (%) 32 (2.3%) 28 (1.7%) 0.240
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, n (%) 1 (0.1%) 4 (0.2%) 0.400
Liver disease, n (%) 27 (2.0%) 35 (2.1%) 0.800
Kidney disease, n (%) 31 (2.3%) 31 (1.9%) 0.520
Abdominal surgery without appendectomy, n (%) 0 0  
Anemia, n (%) 263 (19.3%) 241 (14.7%) < 0.001**
Past treatment history
 Hypertensive drugs, n (%) 123 (9.0%) 167 (10.2%) 0.290
 Insulin injections or hyperglycemia drugs, n (%) 59 (4.3%) 64 (3.9%) 0.580
 Hyperlipidemia drugs, n (%) 145 (10.6%) 141 (8.6%) 0.060
 Cerebrovascular disease, n (%) 43 (3.2%) 37 (2.3%) 0.140
 Cardiovascular disease, n (%) 47 (3.5%) 35 (2.1%) 0.030**
 Chronic renal failure or history of dialysis, n (%) 12 (0.9%) 14 (0.9%) > 0.999
 Depression or anxiety, n (%) 157 (11.5%) 157 (9.6%) 0.090
Lifestyle factors based on JHPI questionnaire
 Smoking more than 100 sticks per month, n (%) 197 (14.5%) 236 (14.4%) 0.920
 Alcohol consumption, n (%) 804 (59.0%) 998 (60.9%) 0.310
 Body weight increased by 10 kg or more from the age of 20, n (%) 315 (23.1%) 359 (21.9%) 0.430
 Exercising for more than 30 min twice a week for at least 1 year 259 (19.0%) 360 (22.0%) 0.040**
 Walking for 1 h/d, n (%) 520 (38.2%) 614 (37.5%) 0.730
 Walking faster than other people of the same age, n (%) 463 (34.0%) 621 (37.9%) 0.030**
 Eating faster than other people, n (%) 520 (38.2%) 614 (37.5%) 0.730
 Having dinner within 2 h before going to sleep at least 3 times a week, n (%) 417 (30.6%) 442 (27.0%) 0.030**
 Eating snacks after dinner at least 3 times a week, n (%) 439 (32.2%) 441 (26.9%) 0.002**
 Skipping breakfast at least 3 times a week, n (%) 379 (27.8%) 405 (24.7%) 0.060
 Insufficient sleep, n (%) 821 (60.3%) 909 (55.5%) 0.010**
Rome III criteria question items
 Improvement with defecation, n (%) 964 (70.8%) 1163 (71.0%) 0.904
 Onset associated with a change in frequency of stool, n (%) 789 (57.9%) 957 (58.4%) 0.795
 Onset associated with a change in form or appearance of stool, n (%) 753 (55.3%) 961 (58.7%) 0.064
 Straining during at least 25% of defecation, n (%) 989 (72.6%) 1050 (64.1%) < 0.001**
 Lumpy or hard stool at least 25% of defecations, n (%) 933 (68.5%) 959 (58.5%) < 0.001**
 Sensation of incomplete evacuation for at least 25% of defecation, n (%) 1040 (76.4%) 1018 (62.1%) < 0.001**
 Sensation of hardly any evacuation, n (%) 1119 (82.2%) 1172 (71.6%) < 0.001**
 Manual maneuvers to facilitate digital evacuation at least 25% of defecation, n (%) 95 (7.0%) 67 (4.1%) 0.001**
 Manual maneuvers to facilitate support of the pelvic floor at least 25% of defecation, n (%) 222 (16.3%) 161 (9.8%) < 0.001**
 Loose stools are rarely present without the use of laxatives, n (%) 753 (55.3%) 352 (21.5%) < 0.001**
Quality of life (SF-8)
 GH (mean ± SD) 45.5 ± 8.1 46.8 ± 7.4 < 0.001**
 PF (mean ± SD) 46.2 ± 9.8 47.5 ± 8.3 < 0.001**
 RP§ (mean ± SD) 47.6 ± 8.2 48.3 ± 7.6 0.003**
 BP (mean ± SD) 47.9 ± 8.9 48.5 ± 8.3 0.041**
 VT†† (mean ± SD) 46.0 ± 8.2 47.2 ± 7.5 < 0.001**
 SF‡‡ (mean ± SD) 45.4 ± 10.8 46.6 ± 9.4 < 0.001**
 MH§§ (mean ± SD) 46.6 ± 8.8 48.0 ± 7.7 < 0.001**
 RE¶¶ (mean ± SD) 43.0 ± 11.1 43.5 ± 10.6 0.169
 PCS††† (mean ± SD) 46.5 ± 7.8 47.3 ± 7.1 0.003**
 MCS‡‡‡ (mean ± SD) 44.0 ± 9.7 45.1 ± 8.7 0.001**
  1. *The level of significance is set at P < 0.05
  2. **Significant difference between groups
  3. GH general health, PF physical functioning, §RP role physical, BP body pain, ††VT vitality, ‡‡SF social functioning, §§MH mental health, ¶¶RE role emotional, †††PCS physical component summary, ‡‡‡MCS mental component summary