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The role of biomechanics in preventing occupational injury.
Public Health Rep 1987 Dec; 102(6):599-602
The role of biomechanics in the prevention of occupational injury was reviewed. Emphasis was given to biomechanics trauma research in industry, occupational biomechanics research needed for the prevention of musculoskeletal injuries, and biomechanics and prevention of overexertion and impact trauma in the workplace. It has been established that both overexertion and impact trauma result from a lack of biomechanics knowledge, in combination with the ineffective application and dissemination of the biomechanics information available. A NIOSH sponsored review on the cause of occupational low back pain has identified a total of 17 potential risk factors, and an expert panel assembled by NIOSH found five major work place risk factors for occupational back pain as well as five other contributing factors. Limitations of existing models for predicting stress on various tissues were discussed. The use of simplifying assumptions in the elucidation of the mechanism by which different risk factors in the workplace combine to cause back pain were considered. The symptoms of overexertion trauma were described. The author concludes that biomechanics is a critical factor in primary prevention when defining job and personal risk factors and engineering guidelines required to redesign jobs.
NIOSH-Publication; NIOSH-Grant; Disease-prevention; Occupational-accidents; Musculoskeletal-system-disorders; Accident-prevention; Biomechanical-engineering; Back-injuries
Industrial & Operations Engineering, University of Michigan, 2254 G G Brown Laboratory, Ann Arbor, MI 48109
Issue of Publication
Public Health Reports
Industrial & Operations Engineering, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division