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NIOSH Lifting Equation App: NLE Calc
The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Lifting Equation mobile application, NLE Calc, is a tool to calculate the overall risk index for single and multiple manual lifting tasks. This application provides risk estimates to help evaluate lifting tasks and reduce the incidence of low back injuries in workers. Source: https://www.cdc.gov/niosh/topics/ergonomics/nlecalc.html
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
Older females in the workforce
The effects of age on psychophysical estimates of maximum acceptable lifting loads This psychophysical study demonstrated that older female workers (aged 50–63 years) selected maximum acceptable lift masses that were (on average) 24% lower than younger workers (aged 20–32 years), which corresponded with lower grip strength and heart rate reserve. Current maximum acceptable lifting weights based on psychophysical information may not protect female workers greater than 50 years of age. Source: Chen, J. A., Dickerson, C. R., Wells, R. P., & Laing, A. C. (2017). Ergonomics , 1-34. http...
Perceived affordances and postures for lifting in child care
Childcare work appears to be full of the physical and mental risk factors frequently associated with chronic exertion leading to injury of the musculoskeletal system. The purpose of this study was to examine the affordances and mechanics for lifting a child, and to associate those mechanics with physical demands reports provided by experienced childcare workers. Participants perceived a smaller safe reaching distance to a child compared to a conventional handling target, despite the identical load and similar load distribution. This difference may reflect the influence of coupling (suitcase had...
Development and validation of an easy-to-use risk assessment tool for cumulative low back loading
The Lifting Fatigue Failure Tool (LiFFT) Recent evidence suggests that musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) may be the result of a fatigue failure process in affected tissues. This paper describes a new low back exposure assessment tool (the Lifting Fatigue Failure Tool [LiFFT]), which estimates a “daily dose” of cumulative loading on the low back using fatigue failure principles. Only three variables are necessary to derive the cumulative load associated with a lifting task: the weight of the load, the maximum horizontal distance from the spine to the load, and the number of repetitions...
Human Body Mechanics of Pushing and Pulling: Analyzing the Factors of Task-related Strain on the Musculoskeletal System
The purpose of this review is to name and describe the important factors of musculoskeletal strain originating from pushing and pulling tasks such as cart handling that are commonly found in industrial contexts. A literature database search was performed using the research platform Web of Science. For a study to be included in this review differences in measured or calculated strain had to be investigated with regard to: (1) cart weight/ load; (2) handle position and design; (3) exerted forces; (4) handling task (push and pull); or (5) task experience. Thirteen studies met the inclusion criteria...
Neck posture during lifting and its effect on trunk muscle activation and lumbar spine posture
Neck and head posture have been found to have a significant influence on the posture of the lower spine region during lifting and both an extended/upward gaze and a flexed/downward gaze have been hypothesized to lead to increased pain and/or overuse of the neck musculature. As a result, strength training recommendations have turned to the use of a retracted neck posture as being the safer posture to assume during lifting. This study examined trunk and neck muscle activity and lumbar spine posture in seven participants while performing moderate load lifts using a retracted neck posture (chin drawn...
Designing, prototype making and evaluating a mechanical aid device for patient transfer between bed and stretcher
Introduction: The present study aimed at designing, prototype making and evaluating a new assistive device to improve patient transfer conditions. Methods: A new aid device for patient transfer was designed and its prototype was made. Comfort and perceived physical exertion of users and stability and applicability of the device were examined. The test subjects included 37 healthcare workers from a hospital with patient transfer experience. The data collection tools consisted of visual analog scales (VAS) and Borg's rating physical effort scale. The rapid entire body assessment (REBA) method...
Initial Results of an Evidence-Based Safe Patient Handling and Mobility Program to Decrease Hospital Worker Injuries
The rate for musculoskeletal injuries among health care workers is one of the highest for all industrial sectors in the United States; these injuries often occur during manual handling (i.e., lifting, moving, transferring, and repositioning) of patients. The following article describes the process used to complete a comprehensive assessment, as well as the planning, implementation, and initial evaluation of a quality improvement program to reduce work-related musculoskeletal disorders (WMSD) among health care workers employed by a rural Midwest hospital. Key elements for WMSD injury reduction were...
Difference between male and female workers lifting the same relative load when palletizing boxes
A few biomechanical studies have contrasted the work techniques of female and male workers during manual material handling (MMH). A recent study showed that female workers differed from males mostly in the strategy they used to lift 15-kg boxes from the ground, especially regarding task duration, knee and back postures and interjoint coordination. However, the lifting technique difference observed in females compared to males was perhaps due to a strength differences. The objective of this study was to test whether female workers would repeat the same lifting technique with a load adjusted to their...
Pushing and pulling: An assessment tool for OHS practitioners
A tool has been developed for supporting practitioners when assessing manual pushing and pulling operations based on an initiative by two global companies in the manufacturing industry. The aim of the tool is to support occupational health and safety practitioners in risk assessment and risk management of pushing and pulling operations in the manufacturing and logistics industries. It is based on a nine-multiplier equation that includes a wide range of factors affecting an operator's health risk and capacity in pushing and pulling. These multipliers are based on psychophysical, physiological...
A multi-component patient-handling intervention improves attitudes and behaviors for safe patient handling and reduces aggression experienced by nursing staff
A controlled before-after study This study evaluated an intervention for patient-handling equipment aimed to improve nursing staffs' use of patient handling equipment and improve their general health, reduce musculoskeletal problems, aggressive episodes, days of absence and work-related accidents. As a controlled before-after study, questionnaire data were collected at baseline and 12-month follow-up among nursing staff at intervention and control wards at two hospitals. At 12-month follow-up, the intervention group had more positive attitudes towards patient-handling equipment and increased...
Injury rates before and after the implementation of a safe resident handling program in the long-term care sector
Manual resident handling (RH) tasks increase risk of musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) for clinical staff in nursing homes. To reduce the incidence and cost of MSDs, a large healthcare corporation instituted a Safe Resident Handling Program (SRHP) comprising purchase of mechanical lifting equipment, worker training, and detailed usage/maintenance protocols. The program was initially administered by a third-party company; after three years, program responsibility shifted to individual centers. Workers' compensation claim rates were compared before and after SRHP implementation. Claims and FTEs...
Effects of natural posture imbalance on posture deviation caused by load carriage
The purpose of this study was to explore posture deviation variability caused by load carriages depending on natural posture imbalance to provide information about a carrying habit exaggerating an individual's posture imbalance. All people exhibit some imbalance from the standard anatomical pose which assumes alignment with the frontal and median planes. In this study natural posture imbalance is the starting point for determining posture deviation which is posture imbalance resulting from an activity, carrying an item. Source: Lyu, S., & LaBat, K. L. (2016). International Journal of Industrial...
Sickness absence and permanent work disability in relation to upper- and lower-body pain and occupational mechanical and psychosocial exposures
Musculoskeletal pain in multiple sites has been associated with sickness absence and permanent work disability. We found that high occupational mechanical exposures were associated with sickness absence, particularly in case of combined pain in the upper and lower body. We also found that combined pain and low social support at work were associated with permanent work disability. Source: Sommer, T. G., Svendsen, S. W., & Frost, P. (2016). Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment & Health . http://dx.doi.org/10.5271/sjweh.3600
Association between occupational lifting and day-to-day change in low-back pain intensity based on company records and text messages
Most previous studies assessing the association between physical workload and development of low-back pain have used self-reports for exposure. Using company records for quantifying exposure, this study shows that consecutive working days and higher workload are associated with acutely increased low-back pain. Source: Andersen LL, Fallentin N, Ajslev JZN, Jakobsen MD, Sundstrup E. Scand J Work Environ Health , 2016. http://dx.doi.org/10.5271/sjweh.3592
Risk assessment of pushing and pulling (RAPP) tool
This tool is designed to help assess the key risks in manual pushing and pulling operations involving whole-body effort, eg moving loaded trolleys or roll cages, or dragging, hauling, sliding or rolling loads. It is intended to be used alongside the Manual handling assessment charts (the MAC tool)1 which helps assess lifting and carrying operations, and follows a similar approach to that tool. It is aimed at those responsible for health and safety in workplaces and will help you to identify high-risk pushing and pulling activities and check the effectiveness of any risk-reduction measures. Source...
Estimation of lumbar spinal loading and trunk muscle forces during asymmetric lifting tasks
Application of whole-body musculoskeletal modelling in OpenSim Large spinal compressive force combined with axial torsional shear force during asymmetric lifting tasks is highly associated with lower back injury (LBI). The aim of this study was to estimate lumbar spinal loading and muscle forces during symmetric lifting (SL) and asymmetric lifting (AL) tasks using a whole-body musculoskeletal modelling approach. Thirteen healthy males lifted loads of 7 and 12 kg under two lifting conditions (SL and AL). Kinematic data and ground reaction force data were collected and then processed by a whole-body...
Musculoskeletal Injury Prevention for New Nurses
Nurses continue to sustain musculoskeletal injuries even with increased emphasis on safe patient handling and mobility (SPHM) and organizational cultures of safety to protect health care workers. Analysis of data from 2011-2014 registered nurse graduates explored hospital safety culture, SPHM education/training, and incidence of new-nurse musculoskeletal injury. Results indicated hospitals provided some type of SPHM education and training, but 46% of study participants were not informed or aware of national SPHM standards or guidelines. Merely 13.9% of participants stated a written “no manual...
Posture and lifting exposures for daycare workers
Daycare employees, specifically caregivers, are a distinct population that may experience increased risk of injury due to the high exposure to bent postures, lifting conditions and high stress associated with their work. The objectives of the study were to collect up to date data on daycare workers and to compare the data between groups working with children of different ages (Infant, Toddler and Preschool). The study consisted of two distinct phases: Phase 1 – Questionnaire distribution, Phase 2 – Observation and analysis involving three dimensional postural monitoring and video recording...
Safety risks associated with physical interactions between patients and caregivers during treatment and care delivery in Home Care settings
A systematic review Objectives: To explore the safety risks associated with physical interactions between patients and caregivers during treatment and care delivery in Home Care settings. Design: Seven-stage framework from the PRISMA statement for research question, eligibility (definition), search, identification of relevant papers from title and abstract, selection and retrieval of papers, appraisal and synthesis. Review methods: The included references (n = 42) were critically appraised using a modified version of Downs and Black checklist and the Mixed Methods Appraisal Tool. Results: The risk...
Biomechanical risk assessment during field loading of hydraulic stretchers into ambulances
The process of loading a stretcher into an ambulance is known to cause a high incidence of back injuries among paramedics. This study aimed to assess the forces at L5/S1 during real-life stretcher loading activities and to determine the variables that contribute significantly to these forces. Analyses involved 58 paramedics (111 shifts) and 175 stretcher loading activities. Estimates of compression and shear forces at L5/S1 were calculated using the 3DSSPP program. Seventy-one percent of loading activities exceeded the safe loading level of 3.4 kN compression force at L5/S1 (mean: 3.9 kN, min–max...
Ischaemic heart disease among workers in occupations associated with heavy lifting
OBJECTIVES: To investigate a hypothesized positive association between employment in occupations where heavy lifting is likely to occur, and the risk of ischaemic heart disease (IHD). MATERIAL AND METHODS: Male blue-collar workers from Denmark (N = 516 180) were monitored with respect to hospital treatment or death due to IHD, through national registers over the years 2001-2010. Poisson regression was used to estimate relative rates of IHD between "workers in occupations which, according to an expert opinion, are likely to involve heavy lifting" and "other blue-collar workers."...
La grande distribution - Dossier
Vaste secteur aux emplois variés, la grande distribution représente l'un des premiers employeurs de France. Marquée par une forte sinistralité, elle a bénéficié d'un plan national d'actions concertées déployé par le réseau Assurance maladie-risques professionnels. Les efforts commencent à payer et un grand nombre d'entreprises restent suivies par les Caisses régionales de santé au travail, afin d'amplifier les actions de prévention en cours. Source: Travail & Sécurité...
Revised NIOSH Lifting Equation May generate spine loads exceeding recommended limits
The 1991 NIOSH Lifting Equation (NLE) is widely used to assess the risk of injury to spine by providing estimates of the recommended weight limit (RWL) in hands. The present study uses the predictive equations developed based on a detailed trunk musculoskeletal biomechanical model to verify whether the RWL generates L5-S1 loads within the limits (e.g., 3400 N for compression recommended by NIOSH and 1000 N for shear recommended in some studies). Fifty lifting activities are simulated here to evaluate the RWL by the NLE and the L5-S1 loads by the predictive equations. In lifting activities involving...
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