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Prevalence of low back pain in working nurses in Zagazig University Hospitals: an epidemiological study

Abstract

Background

Nursing is one of the occupations with a high risk for back injuries. The etiology of low back pain (LBP) among nurses is usually multifactorial, probably because job demands in nursing is a mixture of physically demanding and mentally demanding tasks.

Objective

The aim of this study was to identify the prevalence of and risk factors for chronic LBP in nursing personnel working in Zagazig University Hospitals.

Materials and methods

This study is a quantitative, retrospective, analytical, cross-sectional one. It included 150 female nurses who are currently working in Zagazig University Hospitals. All participants completed a self-administered Oswestry Low Back Disability Questionnaire. Data for risk factors of LBP (age, height, weight, BMI, marital state, parity) and working conditions (duration of employment in the current work, average working hours per week, work demands, duration of absence from work in the last year) were collected.

Results

LBP prevailed in 79.3% of the studied group of working nurses. The highest percentage was found among nurses working in the ICU (95.0%) and the least among those working in the outpatient clinics (64.0%). There was a highly significant association between LBP and body mass index (BMI) (P < 0.001). A higher incidence of LBP was associated with lifting heavy loads, followed by twisting, prolonged standing, prolonged sitting, walking for long distances, and bending forward.

Conclusion

Prevalence of LBP is high among nurses, resulting in significant medical and socioprofessional consequences. Risk factors necessitate multidisciplinary involvement to reduce the incidence of LBP and related costs.

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Correspondence to Amany R. El-Najjar MD.

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El-Soud, A.M.A., El-Najjar, A.R., El-Fattah, N.A. et al. Prevalence of low back pain in working nurses in Zagazig University Hospitals: an epidemiological study. Egypt Rheumatol Rehabil 41, 109–115 (2014). https://doi.org/10.4103/1110-161X.140525

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.4103/1110-161X.140525

Keywords

  • Egypt
  • low back pain
  • nurses
  • prevalence
  • Zagazig