Objectives: to describe and evaluate the effect of an exercise self-management programme for an oral health student who was suffering from a musculoskeletal disorder which had developed in the clinical environment during the course of training.
Design: Single participant case report.
Setting: The University of Otago Faculty of Dentistry and School of Physiotherapy.
Methods: The participant was a 21-year-old female student, enrolled in the University of Otago Bachelor of Oral Health (BOH) course, who was suffering back and neck pain which had developed during her training. A series of chairside stretches, regular home-based stretches, aerobic conditioning and postural strengthening exercises was prescribed. Pain and function was assessed using standardised questionnaires at the commencement of the exercise programme, and again at 6 weeks and 13 weeks.
Results: The participant demonstrated an improvement in her outcome questionnaires exceeding the MCID scores after 13 weeks.
Conclusions: This case report provides a basis for highlighting the importance of measuring and monitoring MSD in a student learning oral health skills; it supports the findings of previous studies showing that an exercise intervention has some benefit for MSD in oral health students.