In epidemiological studies of occupational related illnesses of the lumbar vertebral column, employees with sedentary office jobs are preferentially brought in as a low risk control group. The approach is contentious, however, it is certain that static, bad posture represents a risk for the upper spine and shoulder-arm area. Goal: determining the prevalence of spinal complaints in office workers; determining the connections between spinal strain and workplace ergonomics; determining the ergonomic quality of office workplaces
Written questioning of 1720 employees from 43 administrative bodies (59 % civil service) with regard to back complaints, workplace ergonomics, physical strains beyond work, psycho-social factors
62 % indicated musculoskeletal or joint pains, 43 % pains in the lumbar vertebral column area: the estimated prevalence of lumbar syndrome lay between 23 and 58 % (when working in front of computer screens approximately 8 % higher). The estimated prevalence over an entire life-span was between 45 and 85 % (population average: 28 to 50 %). There was a significantly increased prevalence of cervical vertebral column complaints at workplaces in front of computer screens. A large number of deficits were found in the ergonomic structuring of office workplaces; no significant influence on spinal complaints could, however, be proven.
Michaelis, Nübling, Peinecke, Stößel, Hofmann: Zur arbeitsmedizinischen Bedeutung des Lumbal- und Zervikalsyndroms bei Büroangestellten. Arbeitsmed. Sozialmed. Umweltmed. 32 (1997) S. 368-374
-cross sectoral-Type of hazard:
Epidemiologie, Gesundheitliche Beeinträchtigungen und Störungen, ErgonomieDescription, key words:
Correlation of spinal complaints with working conditions in the office