Assessment of psychological and social current working conditions in epidemiological studies: experiences from the MUSIC-Norrtälje study

Scand J Public Health. 2002;30(2):94-102. doi: 10.1080/14034940210133762.


Background: The aim of this study was to present, evaluate and propose a tool for the assessment of psychosocial working conditions in epidemiological studies. A referent group of the large epidemiological study, the MUSIC-Norrtälje study of musculoskeletal disorders, was used. The respondents were 950 working persons (585 female and 365 male).

Method: Self-administered questionnaire and personal interview were used. The responses were subjected to factor analysis. The resulting model had components generated from the demand-control-support model and action theory.

Result: The result supported the use of different aspects of psychological job demands. The interview data seemed to be more related to factual exposure and the questionnaire data more to individual perception. The usefulness of the model was supported by associations between the model and psychosomatic symptoms and sleep disturbances.

Conclusion: A combination of interview and questionnaire increases the possibility of interpreting the association between working conditions and health and may provide a more effective basis for interventions.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Epidemiologic Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Musculoskeletal Diseases / epidemiology*
  • Musculoskeletal Diseases / psychology
  • Occupational Health*
  • Social Environment*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Sweden / epidemiology
  • Workplace / psychology*