Fire Service instructors undergarment choice to reduce interleukin-6 and minimise physiological and perceptual strain

Emily Watkins, Alan Richardson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Fire Service Instructors frequently experience high levels of physiological and perceptual strain during live fire exposures. Instructors are also at risk of cardiovascular illnesses, with cardiac death being the greatest cause of fire fighter death. Current practice for UK instructors is to select undergarment type based on personal preference, between a boiler suit (BOILER) and a wicking base layer (WBL). Research suggests that shorts and t-shirt (SHORTS) may also be a beneficial alternative undergarment choice. The UK South East Fire Service requested an investigation to identify if undergarment selection can lessen the strain experienced by instructors, and reduce the acute inflammatory response to fire exposures. Eight males completed three 45min sessions in a heat chamber (49.5 ± 1.4°C and 16.9 ± 4.3% RH) whilst performing intermittent walking. At the end of heat exposure change in heart rate was not effected by garment type ( p=0.061,ηp2=0.373). Change in rectal temperature was different between garments (p=0.009,ηp2= 0.271), with trends suggesting that BOILER resulted in a greater change (1.03 ± 0.60°C) than SHORTS (0.76 ± 0.37°C,p=0.589,d=0.21) and WBL (0.72 ± 0.33°C,p=0.545,d=0.25). Interleukin-6 post exposure was greater for BOILER (6.96 ± 0.28pg.mL-1) than both SHORTS (6.59 ± 0.30pg.mL-1,p=0.043,d=0.42) and WBL (6.45 ± 0.43pg.mL-1,p=0.031,d=0.51). Overall, undergarment type had little impact on physiological or perceptual strain. However, wearing WBL or SHORTS may reduce the inflammatory response, and consequently decrease the risk of cardiovascular events.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)41-48
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Thermal Biology
Volume63
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 11 Nov 2016

Fingerprint

Capillary Action
Interleukin-6
Clothing
Hot Temperature
Firefighters
Walking
Heart Rate
Temperature
Research

Bibliographical note

© 2016. This manuscript version is made available under the CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 license http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/.

Keywords

  • Fire service
  • Heat exposure
  • Clothing
  • Occupational health

Cite this

@article{da8d56b42bd144ebb135a3a3a065c75a,
title = "Fire Service instructors undergarment choice to reduce interleukin-6 and minimise physiological and perceptual strain",
abstract = "Fire Service Instructors frequently experience high levels of physiological and perceptual strain during live fire exposures. Instructors are also at risk of cardiovascular illnesses, with cardiac death being the greatest cause of fire fighter death. Current practice for UK instructors is to select undergarment type based on personal preference, between a boiler suit (BOILER) and a wicking base layer (WBL). Research suggests that shorts and t-shirt (SHORTS) may also be a beneficial alternative undergarment choice. The UK South East Fire Service requested an investigation to identify if undergarment selection can lessen the strain experienced by instructors, and reduce the acute inflammatory response to fire exposures. Eight males completed three 45min sessions in a heat chamber (49.5 ± 1.4°C and 16.9 ± 4.3{\%} RH) whilst performing intermittent walking. At the end of heat exposure change in heart rate was not effected by garment type ( p=0.061,ηp2=0.373). Change in rectal temperature was different between garments (p=0.009,ηp2= 0.271), with trends suggesting that BOILER resulted in a greater change (1.03 ± 0.60°C) than SHORTS (0.76 ± 0.37°C,p=0.589,d=0.21) and WBL (0.72 ± 0.33°C,p=0.545,d=0.25). Interleukin-6 post exposure was greater for BOILER (6.96 ± 0.28pg.mL-1) than both SHORTS (6.59 ± 0.30pg.mL-1,p=0.043,d=0.42) and WBL (6.45 ± 0.43pg.mL-1,p=0.031,d=0.51). Overall, undergarment type had little impact on physiological or perceptual strain. However, wearing WBL or SHORTS may reduce the inflammatory response, and consequently decrease the risk of cardiovascular events.",
keywords = "Fire service, Heat exposure, Clothing, Occupational health",
author = "Emily Watkins and Alan Richardson",
note = "{\circledC} 2016. This manuscript version is made available under the CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 license http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/.",
year = "2016",
month = "11",
day = "11",
doi = "10.1016/j.jtherbio.2016.11.004",
language = "English",
volume = "63",
pages = "41--48",
journal = "Journal of Thermal Biology",
issn = "0306-4565",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Fire Service instructors undergarment choice to reduce interleukin-6 and minimise physiological and perceptual strain

AU - Watkins, Emily

AU - Richardson, Alan

N1 - © 2016. This manuscript version is made available under the CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 license http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/.

PY - 2016/11/11

Y1 - 2016/11/11

N2 - Fire Service Instructors frequently experience high levels of physiological and perceptual strain during live fire exposures. Instructors are also at risk of cardiovascular illnesses, with cardiac death being the greatest cause of fire fighter death. Current practice for UK instructors is to select undergarment type based on personal preference, between a boiler suit (BOILER) and a wicking base layer (WBL). Research suggests that shorts and t-shirt (SHORTS) may also be a beneficial alternative undergarment choice. The UK South East Fire Service requested an investigation to identify if undergarment selection can lessen the strain experienced by instructors, and reduce the acute inflammatory response to fire exposures. Eight males completed three 45min sessions in a heat chamber (49.5 ± 1.4°C and 16.9 ± 4.3% RH) whilst performing intermittent walking. At the end of heat exposure change in heart rate was not effected by garment type ( p=0.061,ηp2=0.373). Change in rectal temperature was different between garments (p=0.009,ηp2= 0.271), with trends suggesting that BOILER resulted in a greater change (1.03 ± 0.60°C) than SHORTS (0.76 ± 0.37°C,p=0.589,d=0.21) and WBL (0.72 ± 0.33°C,p=0.545,d=0.25). Interleukin-6 post exposure was greater for BOILER (6.96 ± 0.28pg.mL-1) than both SHORTS (6.59 ± 0.30pg.mL-1,p=0.043,d=0.42) and WBL (6.45 ± 0.43pg.mL-1,p=0.031,d=0.51). Overall, undergarment type had little impact on physiological or perceptual strain. However, wearing WBL or SHORTS may reduce the inflammatory response, and consequently decrease the risk of cardiovascular events.

AB - Fire Service Instructors frequently experience high levels of physiological and perceptual strain during live fire exposures. Instructors are also at risk of cardiovascular illnesses, with cardiac death being the greatest cause of fire fighter death. Current practice for UK instructors is to select undergarment type based on personal preference, between a boiler suit (BOILER) and a wicking base layer (WBL). Research suggests that shorts and t-shirt (SHORTS) may also be a beneficial alternative undergarment choice. The UK South East Fire Service requested an investigation to identify if undergarment selection can lessen the strain experienced by instructors, and reduce the acute inflammatory response to fire exposures. Eight males completed three 45min sessions in a heat chamber (49.5 ± 1.4°C and 16.9 ± 4.3% RH) whilst performing intermittent walking. At the end of heat exposure change in heart rate was not effected by garment type ( p=0.061,ηp2=0.373). Change in rectal temperature was different between garments (p=0.009,ηp2= 0.271), with trends suggesting that BOILER resulted in a greater change (1.03 ± 0.60°C) than SHORTS (0.76 ± 0.37°C,p=0.589,d=0.21) and WBL (0.72 ± 0.33°C,p=0.545,d=0.25). Interleukin-6 post exposure was greater for BOILER (6.96 ± 0.28pg.mL-1) than both SHORTS (6.59 ± 0.30pg.mL-1,p=0.043,d=0.42) and WBL (6.45 ± 0.43pg.mL-1,p=0.031,d=0.51). Overall, undergarment type had little impact on physiological or perceptual strain. However, wearing WBL or SHORTS may reduce the inflammatory response, and consequently decrease the risk of cardiovascular events.

KW - Fire service

KW - Heat exposure

KW - Clothing

KW - Occupational health

U2 - 10.1016/j.jtherbio.2016.11.004

DO - 10.1016/j.jtherbio.2016.11.004

M3 - Article

VL - 63

SP - 41

EP - 48

JO - Journal of Thermal Biology

JF - Journal of Thermal Biology

SN - 0306-4565

ER -