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Back pain among workers in the United States: national estimates and workers at high risk.
Guo R; Tanaka S; Cameron LL; Seligman PJ; Behrens VJ; Ger J; Wild DK; Putz-Anderson V
Am J Ind Med 1995 Nov; 28(5):591-602
The incidence of back pain in the United States was estimated using data obtained from the Occupational Health Supplement to the 1988 National Health Interview Survey. Of the 30,074 workers examined in the survey, 17.6% were identified as back pain cases by responding positively to a question about having back pain every day for a week or more in the past 12 months. A total of 149.1 million workdays were estimated to have been lost during a 1 year period due to these cases. A significantly higher percentage of males between the ages of 35 and 44 were back pain cases compared with females in that age group. The highest prevalence of back pain cases for both sexes was seen in the racial group of Aleut, Eskimo, or American Indian. In addition, white workers demonstrated a higher prevalence of cases compared with black workers. The lower back was the site most frequently identified as causing the pain and over 75% of the cases attributed their back pain to the performance of activities. Sixty five percent of the cases of back pain were attributable to occupational activities. Construction laborer was the highest risk major occupation for work related back pain for male workers, while the largest number of cases was seen among carpenters. Among female workers, nursing aides, orderlies, and attendants was the highest risk occupation as well as the one containing the largest number of cases.
NIOSH-Author; Back-injuries; Epidemiology; Morbidity-rates; Occupational-exposure; Health-care-personnel; Construction-workers; Lost-work-days; Age-factors; Racial-factors; Author Keywords: back pain; occupation; industry; construction; nursing; carpenter; automobile mechanics; maid; janitor; hairdresser
Issue of Publication
American Journal of Industrial Medicine
Page last reviewed: October 5, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division