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Hand forces exerted by long-term care staff when pushing wheelchairs on compliant and non-compliant flooring
Purpose-designed compliant flooring and carpeting have been promoted as a means for reducing fall-related injuries in high-risk environments, such as long-term care. However, it is not known whether these surfaces influence the forces that long-term care staff exert when pushing residents in wheelchairs. We studied 14 direct-care staff who pushed a loaded wheelchair instrumented with a triaxial load cell to test the effects on hand force of flooring overlay (vinyl versus carpet) and flooring subfloor (concrete versus compliant rubber [brand: SmartCells]). During straight-line pushing, carpet overlay...
Predicting Forearm Physical Exposures During Computer Work Using Self-Reports, Software-Recorded Computer Usage Patterns, and Anthropometric and Workstation Measurements
Objectives: Alternative techniques to assess physical exposures, such as prediction models, could facilitate more efficient epidemiological assessments in future large cohort studies examining physical exposures in relation to work-related musculoskeletal symptoms. The aim of this study was to evaluate two types of models that predict arm-wrist-hand physical exposures (i.e. muscle activity, wrist postures and kinematics, and keyboard and mouse forces) during computer use, which only differed with respect to the candidate predicting variables; (i) a full set of predicting variables, including self...
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...
The effect of the presence and characteristics of an outlying group on exposure–outcome associations
Objectives: Physical exposures (eg, lifting or bending) are believed to be risk factors for low-back pain (LBP), but the literature is inconsistent. Exposure and LBP prevalence differ considerably between occupations, and exposure–outcome associations could be severely modified by the presence of particular occupational groups. We aimed to investigate the influence of such outlying groups on the properties of associations between exposure and LBP. Methods: Lifting and trunk flexion were observed for 371 of 1131 workers within 19 groups. LBP was obtained from all workers during three follow...
Exposure–response relationships for the ACGIH threshold limit value for hand-activity level
Results from a pooled data study of carpal tunnel syndrome Objectives: This paper aimed to quantify exposure–response relationships between the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists' (ACGIH) threshold limit value (TLV) for hand-activity level (HAL) and incidence of carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS). Methods: Manufacturing and service workers previously studied by six research institutions had their data combined and re-analyzed. CTS cases were defined by symptoms and abnormal nerve conduction. Hazard ratios (HR) were calculated using proportional hazards regression after...

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