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Work-related Musculoskeletal Disorders, a tri-sector exploration
High rates of WRMSD-related sick leave put pressure on employers and businesses, hitting their bottom lines and potentially leading to understaffing, reduced productivity and lower staff morale. Directly affected workers not only suffer pain but also consequences that can be felt across their working, home and social lives. The construction, healthcare and transportation and storage industries were selected as the focus of this research because they have significantly higher rates of WRMSDs compared with the average rate for all industry. Qualitative research was commissioned to: - Explore what...
Comorbid symptoms of depression and musculoskeletal pain and risk of long term sickness absence
Background: Symptoms of depression and musculoskeletal pain have both been found to be associated with increased risk of long term sickness absence (LTSA). The comorbidity between depression and pain i.e. simultaneous presence of both symptoms, is well established in the literature. The aim for the current investigation was to investigate whether the presence of comorbid pain influences the associations between depressive symptoms and LTSA or if the presence of comorbid depressive symptoms influences associations between musculoskeletal pain and LTSA. Methods: A sample of 6572 Danish female health...
Occupational biomechanical risk factors for surgically treated ulnar nerve entrapment in a prospective study of male construction workers
Evidence was provided for forceful hand-grip work, with and without vibration, as a risk factor for ulnar nerve entrapment (UNE) surgery in a large cohort of Swedish construction workers. Several individual biomechanical factors comprising such work were associated with increased risk of UNE, including: increased grip force, upper extremity load, frequency of hand-held tool use, and hand arm vibration. Source: Jackson, J. A., Olsson, D., Punnett, L., Burdorf, A., Järvholm, B. et Wahlström, J. (2018). Scandinavian journal of work, environment & health . http://dx.doi.org/10.5271/sjweh...
Effects of standing on typing task performance and upper limb discomfort, vascular and muscular indicators
Standing is a popular alternative to traditionally seated computer work. However, no studies have described how standing impacts both upper body muscular and vascular outcomes during a computer typing task. Twenty healthy adults completed two 90-min simulated work sessions, seated or standing. Upper limb discomfort, electromyography (EMG) from eight upper body muscles, typing performance and neck/shoulder and forearm blood flow were collected. Results showed significantly less upper body discomfort and higher typing speed during standing. Lower Trapezius EMG amplitude was higher during standing...
Visual and psychological stress during computer work in healthy, young females - physiological responses
Purpose: Among computer workers, visual complaints, and neck pain are highly prevalent. This study explores how occupational simulated stressors during computer work, like glare and psychosocial stress, affect physiological responses in young females with normal vision. Methods: The study was a within-subject laboratory experiment with a counterbalanced, repeated design. Forty-three females performed four 10-min computer-work sessions with different stress exposures: (1) minimal stress; (2) visual stress (direct glare); (3) psychological stress; and (4) combined visual and psychological stress...
Blood Pressure Response to Interrupting Workplace Sitting Time With Non-Exercise Physical Activity
Results of a 12-month Cohort Study Objective: To evaluate the blood pressure (BP) effects of a yearlong e-health solution designed to interrupt prolonged occupational sitting time. Methods: BP data of 228 desk-based employees (45.1 ± 10.5 years) were analyzed at baseline, 3, 6, 9, and 12 months. Results: Systolic BP significantly reduced from baseline for the first 9 months (1.0 to 3.4 mmHg; P < 0.01) while diastolic and mean arterial pressure decreased for the full 12-months (4 to 5 mmHg for diastolic pressure and 3.6 to 4.2 mmHg for MAP; all P < 0.01). Participants used the e-health...
Une atteinte aux capacités de travail : l'usure des articulations
L'usure professionnelle est de plus en plus prise en compte par les politiques de santé publique, car elle pèse sur les organisations et les collectifs de travail, voire sur l'employabilité des individus. Ce 4-pages est centré sur l'usure des articulations, un processus invalidant pour les salariés qui porte atteinte à leurs capacités de travail et les contraint à recourir à des stratégies d'évitement ou de contournement. Il propose une approche statistique longitudinale de la question à partir des...
Musculoskeletal Symptoms Among Finnish Professional Orchestra Musicians
BACKGROUND: The prevalence of musculoskeletal symptoms is high among professional musicians (73-88%). AIMS: We investigated the prevalence of musculoskeletal symptoms in Finnish symphony orchestra musicians. We compared individual instruments as well as the perceived demands of orchestral programs and difficulties in recovering after performances. METHODS: In this cross-sectional questionnaire 920 of 2,785 members of the Finnish Musicians Union (33%) completed the questionnaire, including 361 full-time members of symphony orchestras. Questions about pain symptoms and frequency were based on the...
Are work organization interventions effective in preventing or reducing work-related musculoskeletal disorders?
A systematic review of the literature Objectives: We sought to determine whether interventions that target work organization or the psychosocial work environment are effective in preventing or reducing work-related musculoskeletal disorders (WMSD) compared to usual work. Methods: We systematically reviewed the 2000–2015 English and French language scientific literature, including studies evaluating the effectiveness of an organizational or psychosocial work intervention on incidence, prevalence or intensity of work-related musculoskeletal pain or disorders in the neck, shoulders, upper limbs...
Can beliefs about musculoskeletal pain and work be changed at the national level?
Prospective evaluation of the Danish national Job & Body campaign Using a mixture of networking activities, workplace visits and a mass media campaign, the Danish national Job & Body health campaign improved beliefs about musculoskeletal pain and work among public-sector employees in Denmark. Intensive and long-term national campaigns may be a strategically important tool against musculoskeletal disorders and their consequences in the population. Source: Andersen, L. L., Geisle, N., & Knudsen, B. (2017). Scand J Work Environ Health . http://dx.doi.org/10.5271/sjweh.3692
Work-related physical, psychosocial and individual factors associated with musculoskeletal symptoms among surgeons
Implications for ergonomic interventions This study evaluated the effect of physical, psychosocial and individual factors on the presence of musculoskeletal symptoms (MSS) among surgeons (n = 312) in Iran. Data were collected using questionnaires and analysed by multivariate logistic regression. The prevalence of MSS, particularly in the knees (48.7%), neck (45.8%), low back (42.3%) and shoulders (40.1%) was relatively high. Work-related factors including time spent on surgeries each week (>25 h/week), number of hours working in standing position per day (>4 h/day), moderate to high levels...
Saddle Seat Reduces Musculoskeletal Discomfort in Microsurgery Surgeons
Background. Microsurgery is a surgical procedure that requires a high degree of precision and is commonly facilitated through the use of an intraoperative microscope. When operating the microscope system, the long-term posture and stance lead to fatigue and musculoskeletal disorders in surgeons, and seats are commonly employed to diminish these problems. The present study was conducted to evaluate musculoskeletal discomfort during work with a saddle seat especially designed for people using intraoperative microscopes in comparison with conventional seats for microscopic works. Materials and methods...
Effects of prolonged microscopic work on neck and back strain amongst male ENT clinicians and the benefits of a prototype postural support chair
Musculoskeletal pain is a common occupational hazard experienced by surgeons. Otologists are predisposed to neck and back pain due to regular prolonged microscopic work. We conducted a prospective pilot study to investigate the effects of sustained microscopic work on the neck and back, its correlation to surgical experience and to assess the benefits of a prototype postural support chair (PSC) amongst 10 male ear, nose and throat (ENT) clinicians. We used a subjective measure of time to fatigue and pain for the neck and back as well as objective readings from a surface electromyogram (sEMG). We...
Is objectively measured sitting at work associated with low back pain?
A cross sectional study in the DPhacto cohort Objectives: Low-back pain (LBP) is a substantial health challenge due to the risk for long-term sickness absence and early retirement. Several biomechanical exposures at work, including sitting, have been suggested to increase the risk for LBP. The objectives of this study were to determine (i) the extent to which temporal patterns and total amount of objectively measured sitting is associated with LBP intensity and (ii) whether selected modifiers influence these associations. Methods: This cross sectional study uses baseline data from the Danish PHysical...
A screening tool for the risk of disability retirement due to musculoskeletal disorders
Objective: This study aimed to develop and validate a risk screening tool using a points system to assess the risk of future disability retirement due to musculoskeletal disorders (MSD). Methods: The development population, the Health 2000 Survey, consisted of a nationally representative sample of Finnish employees aged 30–60 years (N=3676) and the validation population, the Helsinki Health Study, consisted of employees of the City of Helsinki aged 40–60 years (N=6391). Both surveys were linked to data on disability retirement awards due to MSD from national register for an 11-year...
The Effect of Intelligent Physical Exercise Training on Sickness Presenteeism and Absenteeism Among Office Workers
Objective: The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of individually tailored intelligent physical exercise training (IPET) on presenteeism and absenteeism among office workers. Methods: In a 1-year randomized controlled trial (RCT), employees were allocated to a training group TG (N = 193) or control group CG (N = 194). TG received 1-hour high-intensity IPET once a week within working hours, and was recommended to perform 30 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity (PA) 6 days a week during leisure-time. Results: An intention-to-treat analysis showed no effect on absenteeism,...
A research framework for the development and implementation of interventions preventing work-related musculoskeletal disorders
Objectives: Work-related musculoskeletal disorders (MSD) are highly prevalent and put a large burden on the (working) society. Primary prevention of work-related MSD focuses often on physical risk factors (such as on manual lifting and awkward postures) but has not been too successful in reducing the MSD burden. This may partly be caused by insufficient knowledge of etiological mechanisms and/or a lack of adequately feasible interventions (theory failure and program failure, respectively), possibly due to limited integration of research disciplines. A research framework could link research disciplines...
The Relationship Between Occupational Standing and Sitting and Incident Heart Disease Over a 12-Year Period in Ontario, Canada
While a growing body of research is examining the impacts of prolonged occupational sitting on cardiovascular and other health risk factors, relatively little work examined the effects of occupational standing. The objectives of this paper were to examine the relationship between occupations that require predominantly sitting, and those that require predominantly standing, and incident heart disease. A prospective cohort study combining responses to a population health survey with administrative health care records, linked at the individual level was conducted in Ontario, Canada. The sample included...
Cumulative occupational mechanical exposures during working life and risk of sickness absence and disability pension
Prospective cohort study Using a biomechanical job exposure matrix combined with Danish registers, cumulative occupational mechanical exposures throughout life (ie, more years with heavy and frequent lifting, and kneeling work) predicted risk of long-term sickness absence among older workers. Importantly, heavy lifting throughout working life was associated with disability pension. Source: Sundstrup E, Hansen ÅM, Mortensen EL, Poulsen OM, Clausen T, Rugulies R, Møller A, Andersen LL. (2017). Scand J Work Environ Health . http://dx.doi.org/10.5271/sjweh.3663
Work-related biomechanical exposure and job strain in midlife separately and jointly predict disability after 28 years
A Finnish longitudinal study Higher level of work-related biomechanical exposure and job strain in midlife separately and jointly carried a higher risk for increase in disability after 28 years. Mitigation of both of these co-occurring exposures at work in midlife could reduce the risk of disability in later life. Thus the workplace should be promoted as an arena for preventive interventions regarding disability in old age. Source: Prakash KC, Neupane S, Leino-Arjas P, von Bonsdorff MB, Rantanen T, von Bonsdorff ME, Seitsamo J, Ilmarinen J, Nygård C-H. (2017). Scand J Work Environ Health...
Relations between work and upper extremity musculoskeletal problems (UEMSP) and the moderating role of psychosocial work factors on the relation between computer work and UEMSP
Purpose: Computer work has been identified as a risk factor for upper extremity musculoskeletal problems (UEMSP). But few studies have investigated how psychosocial and organizational work factors affect this relation. Nor have gender differences in the relation between UEMSP and these work factors been studied. We sought to estimate: (1) the association between UEMSP and a range of physical, psychosocial and organizational work exposures, including the duration of computer work, and (2) the moderating effect of psychosocial work exposures on the relation between computer work and UEMSP. Methods...
Paramedics' working strategies while loading a stretcher into an ambulance
For paramedics, loading a stretcher into an ambulance is an activity with a high risk of back injury and accidents. The objective of this study was to document strategies paramedics use at work while loading a powered stretcher into an ambulance. A total of 249 stretcher loading operations performed by 58 paramedics, and 51 semistructured post-intervention interviews were analyzed. Almost three quarters of loading operations required additional actions (e.g., raising the shoulders and additional lifting) to insert the stretcher into the cot fastener system in the ambulance. Some strategies that...
A Study of the Prevalence of Musculoskeletal Disorders in Surgeons Performing Minimally Invasive Surgery
Introduction: Minimally invasive surgery (MIS) has shown significant benefits for patients and healthcare systems. However, due to the poor ergonomic adaptation of operating rooms and surgical instruments, most surgeons suffer from pain caused by musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs). Methods: A descriptive survey on MIS surgeons working on different surgical specialties has been carried out in Hospital Valdecilla (Spain). The aim is to determine the prevalence of MSDs by using a personal interview and the standardized Nordic questionnaire (SNQ). The study determines the prevalence of MSDs in different...
Temporal relationships between job strain and low-back pain
To our knowledge this is one of the first studies to examine reciprocal relationships between job strain and back pain and which accounts for time-invariant characteristics. The study highlights a need for more work to establish if there are bidirectional relationships, with more frequent repeat measurements and which account for time-stable individual factors. Source: Hanson, L. L. M., Madsen, I. E., Rugulies, R., Peristera, P., Westerlund, H., & Descatha, A. Scandinavian Journal of Work . http://dx.doi.org/10.5271/sjweh.3654
Les lombalgies liées au travail
Les lombalgies représentent aujourd'hui 20 % des accidents du travail : c'est le chiffre révélé par une étude inédite de l'Assurance Maladie - Risques professionnels. Le nombre des lombalgies d'origine professionnelle ne diminue pas depuis dix ans en dépit de la baisse de la sinistralité. Elles coûtent près d'un milliard d'euros par an, soit l'équivalent du coût des autres troubles musculo-squelettiques (TMS). Certains secteurs d'activité présentent un sur-risque en matière...
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