The Incidence and Severity of Musculoskeletal Disorders Among Nurses Working in Taiwan Medical Center

Friday, 25 July 2014

Shu-Hung Lee, RN, MSN
Department of Nursing, National Cheng Kung University Hospital, Tainan, Taiwan, R.O.C, Tainan, Taiwan
Shu-Yuan Lin, RN, PhD
College of Nursing, Kaohsiung Medical University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan

Purpose: The purpose of this study is to investigate the incidence and severity of musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) among medical center nurses.

 Methods: This study used a cross-sectional descriptive design with the purposive sampling method. Between April 2013 and May 2013, structure questionnaires were used to survey nurses employed in the medical centers of southern Taiwan. A total of 992 questionnaires were distributed to all of the medical center nurses, and 906 questionnaires were returned. A response rate was 91.3.0%. Excluding the incomplete questionnaires, data of 741 valid questionnaires was analyzed. Descriptive and inferential statistics such as t tests, ANOVA and Post hoc Scheffe tests were performed by using SPSS version 17.

 Results: The incidence of MSDs was 86.5% in the medical centers nurses, and 65.8% reported moderate to severe degree of MSDs. The most frequently reported injuries in body were low back (52.0%), shoulder (41.8%), and neck (38.1%). Significant differences were found between age, years of nursing practice, years of employment, past disease history, designation, department and the severity of MSDs. The most frequently reported protective materials is compression socks(73.9%),backrest(45.6%)and corset belt(36.8%)

 Conclusion: The MSDs is highly prevalent and the severity has an impact on nurses’ work and daily life. The MSDs become more severe as a result of an increase of age, years of nursing practice, and years of employment. We suggest nursing managers to schedule appropriate breaks during the work hours, buy protective devices, arrange continue education about the prevention of MSDs