E-ISSN 2667-8721

Evaluation of low back pain prevalence in emergency department workers


Introduction: Low back pain is a global health problem that causes impediments in people`s lives. The aim of this study was to evaluate the prevalence of low back pain of emergency department workers and to evaluate the risk factors with Oswestry Low Back Pain scale as the lumbar region of emergency department workers are vocationally subjected to straining movements due to heavy lifting and sudden movements.

Method: The population of the study consists of the employees working in the emergency department within the specified date range. Although there were a total of 150 people in the double center, a total of 126 people agreed to participate because some of them were on leave and some did not want to participate in the study. The sample consisted of 27 doctors, 76 nurses, 12 medical secretaries, 11 cleaning personnel and security personnel. The Oswestry Low Back Pain scale was developed to assess functional impairment. Mann Whitney-U test and Kruskal Wallis –H test were used in statistical evaluations depending on the status of being a numerical independent group, since the correlated variables were categorical (nominal or ordinal) and binary or with more variables.

Results: 46.8% (n = 59) of the participants were female and 53.2% (n = 67) were male. When the participants were evaluated according to age groups, 3.2% (n = 4) were between 18-21 years, 49.2% (n = 62) between 22-27 years, 24.6% (n = 31) between 28-33 years, 17.5% (n = 22) ) 34-39 years old, 5.6% (n = 7) were over 40 years old. According to the sample size of our study, the annual prevalence of low back pain was 55.6% and the prevalence of lumbar hernia was 15.8% in the emergency service personnel. When the groups were evaluated in terms of the diagnosis of lumbar hernia, the OSA of those diagnosed with hernia was 17.52 ± 6.93 and those without lumbar hernia diagnosis was 8.4 ± 6.8. A statistically significant difference was found between the groups. A statistically significant difference was found in the ostwestry scale score between genders. This difference among the occupational groups was also found to be different statistically.

Conclusion: The prevalence of low back pain in the society among the occupational groups, especially in the health sector, is high. In dynamic work environments such as the emergency department, solutions should be developed to reduce the determined risk factors in order to prevent low back pain symptoms after sudden and straining movement.

Keywords: low back pain, emergency department, Ostwestry low back pain scale

Eurasian J Critical Care 2019; 1 (4):145-151
Original Article