Investigating Musculoskeletal Discomforts and their Relation to Workplace Ergonomic Conditions among Computer Office Workers at Alzahra Hospital, Isfahan, Iran

  • Babak Vahdatpour Associate Professor, Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, School of Medicine, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3325-0538
  • Maryam Bozorgi Student of Medicine, School of Medicine AND Student Research Committee, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran
  • Mohammad Reza Taheri Department of Occupational Health, School of Health, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran https://orcid.org/0000-0002-4539-7924
Keywords: Musculoskeletal diseases; Musculoskeletal pain; Ergonomic assessment

Abstract

Background: Musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) are relatively prevalent among office employees of hospitals. These disorders are related to several ergonomic risk factors including failure to cope with physical job demands, repetitive motions, contact stress, and poor or inappropriate body postures. This study was conducted to evaluate MSDs in computer office workers at Alzahra Hospital, Isfahan, Iran.

Methods: This cross-sectional descriptive-analytic study was performed at Alzahra Hospital in summer 2014. Overall, 71 office workers were enrolled in the study via systematic sampling method. Ergonomic risk factors were evaluated using the Rapid Office Strain Assessment (ROSA) checklist. The Cornell Musculoskeletal Discomfort Questionnaire (CMDQ) was used to assess MSDs. The collected data were analyzed using Spearman and Pearson correlation tests in SPSS software.

Results: Musculoskeletal discomfort was mostly prevalent in the neck, low back, and shoulder area, respectively. Moreover, 97.2% of participants had final ROSA scores of 5 and higher. Spearman correlation test showed a direct relationship between the final ROSA score and severity of musculoskeletal discomfort in the upper limb area including arm, forearm, and wrist (P < 0.05); this relationship did not exist for other parts of the body.

Conclusion: Based on the ROSA scores, most individuals working with computers were prone to MSDs. Therefore, it is necessary to implement suitable ergonomic interventions targeting body postures and work place improvements.

References

1. Vahdatpour B, Khosravi S, Rahimi A, Sattari S, Mogtaderi A, Dabiri F, et al. Work-related musculoskeletal disorders among radiologists in Isfahan: a cross-sectional study. Research Journal of Biological Sciences 2010; 5(10): 664-9.
2. Taheri MR, Habibi E, Hasanzadeh A, Mahdavi Rad M. Relationship mental workload with musculoskeletal disorders among Alzahra hospital nurses by NASA-TLX index and CMD. J Health Syst Res 2014; 10(4): 775-85. [In Persian].
3. Khosrawi S, Rahimi A, Vahdatpour B, Dabiri Skouie F, Mashrabi O. Work-related musculoskeletal disorders among cardiologists. Research Journal of Biological Sciences 2011; 6(4): 170-4.
4. Genaidy AM, Al-Shedi AA, Karwowski W. Postural stress analysis in industry. Appl Ergon 1994; 25(2): 77-87.
5. Ohlsson K, Attewell R, Skerfving S. Self-reported symptoms in the neck and upper limbs of female assembly workers. Impact of length of employment, work pace, and selection. Scand J Work Environ Health 1989; 15(1): 75-80.
6. Vanwonterghem K. Work-related musculoskeletal problems: Some ergonomic considerations. J Hum Ergol (Tokyo) 1996; 25(1): 5-13.
7. Spielholz P, Silverstein B, Morgan M, Checkoway H, Kaufman J. Comparison of self-report, video observation and direct measurement methods for upper extremity musculoskeletal disorder physical risk factors. Ergonomics 2001; 44(6): 588-613.
8. Devereux JJ, Vlachonikolis IG, Buckle PW. Epidemiological study to investigate potential interaction between physical and psychosocial factors at work that may increase the risk of symptoms of musculoskeletal disorder of the neck and upper limb. Occup Environ Med 2002; 59(4): 269-77.
9. Kumar R. Ergonomic evaluation and design of tools in cleaning occupation [PhD Thesis]. Lulea, Sweden: Lulea University of Technology; 2006.
10. Sonne M, Villalta DL, Andrews DM. Development and evaluation of an office ergonomic risk checklist: ROSA--rapid office strain assessment. Appl Ergon 2012; 43(1): 98-108.
11. Rempel DM, Krause N, Goldberg R, Benner D, Hudes M, Goldner GU. A randomised controlled trial evaluating the effects of two workstation interventions on upper body pain and incident musculoskeletal disorders among computer operators. Occup Environ Med 2006; 63(5): 300-6.
12. Reeuwijk KG, Robroek SJ, Hakkaart L, Burdorf A. How work impairments and reduced work ability are associated with health care use in workers with musculoskeletal disorders, cardiovascular disorders or mental disorders. J Occup Rehabil 2014; 24(4): 631-9.
13. Afifehzadeh-Kashani H, Choobineh A, Bakand Sh, Gohari MR, Abbastabar H, Moshtaghi P. Validity and reliability of farsi version of Cornell Musculoskeletal Discomfort Questionnaire (CMDQ). Iran Occup Health 2011; 7(4): 69-75.
14. Sonne M, Andrews DM. The Rapid Office Strain Assessment (ROSA): Validity of online worker self-assessments and the relationship to worker discomfort. Occupational Ergonomics 2012; 10(4): 83-101.
15. Juul-Kristensen B, Jensen C. Self-reported workplace related ergonomic conditions as prognostic factors for musculoskeletal symptoms: the "BIT" follow up study on office workers. Occup Environ Med 2005; 62(3): 188-94.
16. Szeto GP, Straker LM, O'Sullivan PB. A comparison of symptomatic and asymptomatic office workers performing monotonous keyboard work--2: neck and shoulder kinematics. Man Ther 2005; 10(4): 281-91.
17. Meinert M, Konig M, Jaschinski W. Web-based office ergonomics intervention on work-related complaints: a field study. Ergonomics 2013; 56(11): 1658-68.
18. Choobineh AR, Rahimi Fard H, Jahangiri M, Mahmood Khani S. Musculoskeletal injuries and their associated risk factors. Iran Occup Health 2012; 8(4): 70-81. [In Persian].
19. Ranasinghe P, Perera YS, Lamabadusuriya DA, Kulatunga S, Jayawardana N, Rajapakse S, et al. Work related complaints of neck, shoulder and arm among computer office workers: a cross-sectional evaluation of prevalence and risk factors in a
developing country. Environ Health 2011; 10: 70.
20. Eltayeb S, Staal JB, Hassan A, de Bie RA. Work related risk factors for neck, shoulder and arms complaints: a cohort study among Dutch computer office workers. J Occup Rehabil 2009; 19(4): 315-22.
21. McAtamney L, Nigel CE. RULA: a survey method for the investigation of work-related upper limb disorders. Appl Ergon 1993; 24(2): 91-9.
22. Li G, Buckle P. Evaluating change in exposure to risk for musculoskeletal Disorders: a practical tool. Suffolk, UK: HSE Book; 1999.
23. Kee D, Karwowski W. LUBA: an assessment technique for postural loading on the upper body based on joint motion discomfort and maximum holding time. Appl Ergon 2001; 32(4): 357-66.
24. Rowshani Z, Mortazavi SB, Khavanin A, Motamedzade M, Hajizade E, Mohseni M. The effect of postures on musculoskeletal disorders in work places. J Krmanshah Unive Med Sci 2012; 16(5): 367-74. [In Persian].
25. Habibi E, Soury Sh, Abolghasemian M. The effect of three ergonomics intervention on work-related posture and musculoskeletal disorders in office workers (computer users) Gas Company of Isfahan. J Health Syst Res 2013; 9(10): 1041-104. [In Persian].
26. Mulimani P, Hoe VCW, Hayes MJ, Idiculla JJ, Abas ABL, Karanth L. Ergonomic interventions for preventing musculoskeletal disorders in dental care practitioners [Protocol]. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2014; 8: CD011261.
27. Levanon Y, Gefen A, Lerman Y, Givon U, Ratzon NZ. Reducing musculoskeletal disorders among computer operators: comparison between ergonomics interventions at the workplace. Ergonomics 2012; 55(12): 1571-85.
Published
2019-06-01
Section
Original Article(s)