Predicting the onset of forearm pain: A prospective study across 12 occupational groups

E. Nahit, S. Taylor, I. Hunt, A. J. Silman, Gary John MacFarlane

Research output: Contribution to journalEditorial

21 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Objective. To determine, among workers free of forearm pain, the role of mechanical and psychosocial factors in predicting future onset.

Methods. A prospective cohort study was conducted among 782 newly employed workers from 12 occupational groups. At baseline, a cohort of 782 workers free of forearm pain was identified and measurement was made about physical and psychosocial aspects of their job and working environment. Subjects were recontacted after 1 year to determine new onsets of forearm pain. A sample of those reporting new onset forearm pain underwent a structured examination of the upper limb.

Results. One year after baseline, 666 (85%) subjects were followed up. The overall prevalence of new onset forearm pain was 8.3% (n = 55). The strongest mechanical risk factor was frequent repetitive movements of the arm or wrist (odds ratio [OR] 2.9, 95% confidence interval [95% CI] 1.6-5.2). The strongest psychosocial risk factors were work considered monotonous at least half of the time (OR 3.0, 95% CI 1.6-5.7) or work with little autonomy (OR 2.6, 95% CI 1.1-6.1). Three specific independent risk factors (monotonous work, repetitive wrist movement, working with hands above shoulder level) could distinguish groups of subjects at substantially different risks of onset.

Conclusions. Along with repetitive movements of the arms and wrists, mechanical postural factors and psychosocial factors also are important risk factors for onset of forearm pain. Our study emphasizes the multifactorial nature of risks for onset of forearm pain, and provides leads as to possible mechanisms for prevention.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)519-525
Number of pages6
JournalArthritis Care & Research
Volume49
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2003

Keywords

  • regional pain syndrome
  • forearm
  • occupational risk
  • epidemiology
  • REGIONAL MUSCULOSKELETAL PAIN
  • PSYCHOSOCIAL FACTORS
  • SHOULDER PAIN
  • RISK-FACTORS
  • UPPER-LIMB
  • BACK-PAIN
  • WORK
  • POPULATION
  • DISEASE
  • NECK

Cite this

Predicting the onset of forearm pain: A prospective study across 12 occupational groups. / Nahit, E.; Taylor, S.; Hunt, I.; Silman, A. J.; MacFarlane, Gary John.

In: Arthritis Care & Research, Vol. 49, 2003, p. 519-525.

Research output: Contribution to journalEditorial

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abstract = "Objective. To determine, among workers free of forearm pain, the role of mechanical and psychosocial factors in predicting future onset.Methods. A prospective cohort study was conducted among 782 newly employed workers from 12 occupational groups. At baseline, a cohort of 782 workers free of forearm pain was identified and measurement was made about physical and psychosocial aspects of their job and working environment. Subjects were recontacted after 1 year to determine new onsets of forearm pain. A sample of those reporting new onset forearm pain underwent a structured examination of the upper limb.Results. One year after baseline, 666 (85{\%}) subjects were followed up. The overall prevalence of new onset forearm pain was 8.3{\%} (n = 55). The strongest mechanical risk factor was frequent repetitive movements of the arm or wrist (odds ratio [OR] 2.9, 95{\%} confidence interval [95{\%} CI] 1.6-5.2). The strongest psychosocial risk factors were work considered monotonous at least half of the time (OR 3.0, 95{\%} CI 1.6-5.7) or work with little autonomy (OR 2.6, 95{\%} CI 1.1-6.1). Three specific independent risk factors (monotonous work, repetitive wrist movement, working with hands above shoulder level) could distinguish groups of subjects at substantially different risks of onset.Conclusions. Along with repetitive movements of the arms and wrists, mechanical postural factors and psychosocial factors also are important risk factors for onset of forearm pain. Our study emphasizes the multifactorial nature of risks for onset of forearm pain, and provides leads as to possible mechanisms for prevention.",
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AU - Hunt, I.

AU - Silman, A. J.

AU - MacFarlane, Gary John

PY - 2003

Y1 - 2003

N2 - Objective. To determine, among workers free of forearm pain, the role of mechanical and psychosocial factors in predicting future onset.Methods. A prospective cohort study was conducted among 782 newly employed workers from 12 occupational groups. At baseline, a cohort of 782 workers free of forearm pain was identified and measurement was made about physical and psychosocial aspects of their job and working environment. Subjects were recontacted after 1 year to determine new onsets of forearm pain. A sample of those reporting new onset forearm pain underwent a structured examination of the upper limb.Results. One year after baseline, 666 (85%) subjects were followed up. The overall prevalence of new onset forearm pain was 8.3% (n = 55). The strongest mechanical risk factor was frequent repetitive movements of the arm or wrist (odds ratio [OR] 2.9, 95% confidence interval [95% CI] 1.6-5.2). The strongest psychosocial risk factors were work considered monotonous at least half of the time (OR 3.0, 95% CI 1.6-5.7) or work with little autonomy (OR 2.6, 95% CI 1.1-6.1). Three specific independent risk factors (monotonous work, repetitive wrist movement, working with hands above shoulder level) could distinguish groups of subjects at substantially different risks of onset.Conclusions. Along with repetitive movements of the arms and wrists, mechanical postural factors and psychosocial factors also are important risk factors for onset of forearm pain. Our study emphasizes the multifactorial nature of risks for onset of forearm pain, and provides leads as to possible mechanisms for prevention.

AB - Objective. To determine, among workers free of forearm pain, the role of mechanical and psychosocial factors in predicting future onset.Methods. A prospective cohort study was conducted among 782 newly employed workers from 12 occupational groups. At baseline, a cohort of 782 workers free of forearm pain was identified and measurement was made about physical and psychosocial aspects of their job and working environment. Subjects were recontacted after 1 year to determine new onsets of forearm pain. A sample of those reporting new onset forearm pain underwent a structured examination of the upper limb.Results. One year after baseline, 666 (85%) subjects were followed up. The overall prevalence of new onset forearm pain was 8.3% (n = 55). The strongest mechanical risk factor was frequent repetitive movements of the arm or wrist (odds ratio [OR] 2.9, 95% confidence interval [95% CI] 1.6-5.2). The strongest psychosocial risk factors were work considered monotonous at least half of the time (OR 3.0, 95% CI 1.6-5.7) or work with little autonomy (OR 2.6, 95% CI 1.1-6.1). Three specific independent risk factors (monotonous work, repetitive wrist movement, working with hands above shoulder level) could distinguish groups of subjects at substantially different risks of onset.Conclusions. Along with repetitive movements of the arms and wrists, mechanical postural factors and psychosocial factors also are important risk factors for onset of forearm pain. Our study emphasizes the multifactorial nature of risks for onset of forearm pain, and provides leads as to possible mechanisms for prevention.

KW - regional pain syndrome

KW - forearm

KW - occupational risk

KW - epidemiology

KW - REGIONAL MUSCULOSKELETAL PAIN

KW - PSYCHOSOCIAL FACTORS

KW - SHOULDER PAIN

KW - RISK-FACTORS

KW - UPPER-LIMB

KW - BACK-PAIN

KW - WORK

KW - POPULATION

KW - DISEASE

KW - NECK

U2 - 10.1002/art.11202

DO - 10.1002/art.11202

M3 - Editorial

VL - 49

SP - 519

EP - 525

JO - Arthritis Care & Research

JF - Arthritis Care & Research

SN - 0893-7524

ER -