Purpose: This study examines the impact of work-related psychosocial and mechanical exposure on the development of neck/shoulder pain in the general working population. Methods: A randomly drawn cohort from the general population in Norway aged 18–66 was followed up for 3 years (n = 12,550, response rate = 67 %). Eligible respondents were in paid work during the reference week in 2006 and 2009, or temporarily absent from such work (n = 6,745). Four work-related psychosocial factors and six mechanical exposures were measured. Outcomes of interest were moderate or severe neck/shoulder pain at follow-up adjusted for baseline neck/shoulder pain. Results: In total, 16.9 % (1,138 individuals) reported neck/shoulder pain during the last month at follow-up. Work related psychosocial predictors of neck/shoulder pain were high job demands (highest OR 1.41, 95 % CI 1.11–1.78) and low levels of supportive leadership (highest OR 1.66, 95 % CI 1.08–2.54). Mechanical factors were neck flexion (highest OR 1.77, 95 % CI 1.31–2.39) and lifting in awkward postures (highest OR 1.81, 95 % CI 1.21–2.71). The estimated population risk attributable to these factors was about 23 %. The relative risk for neck/shoulder pain associated with psychosocial exposure was slightly influenced by adjustment for physical risk...

Sterud, Tom; Johannessen, Håkon Andre; Tynes, Tore
International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health 87(5): 471–481
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