Prevalence and Associated Factors of Low Back Pain among Clinicians of A Major Referral Hospital

Med J Malaysia. 2015 Feb;70(1):12-7.


Objectives: Low back pain (LBP) is one of the most common health problems faced by health care professionals due to their occupational lifestyle. This study aimed to quantify the prevalence of LBP among clinicians, and to identify its associated factors.

Methods: A cross sectional study was carried out in King Khalid University Hospital (KKUH) among 460 clinicians from different specialties. A validated questionnaire of 21 items was used to collect data. Chi-square test and odds ratios were used to observe and measure the association between categorical variables. Binary logistic regression by Wald method was used to identify independent factors associated with LBP (yes/no).

Results: The prevalence of LBP was found to be 59.4% (244) with 38% of them reported as severe. The distribution of prevalence among consultants, registrars and residents was 110 (45.1%), 91 (37.3%) and 43 (17.6%) respectively. Out of 114 (46.7%) surgeons who suffer from LBP we found, orthopaedic surgeons had 10.2% prevalence of LBP. Male clinician (odds ratio: 1.7; 95% Confidence Interval (CI): 1.1- 2.8), consultant (4.1; 95% CI: 2.1-8.3), registrar (2.2; 95% CI: 1.2-4.2), more than 10 hours/week near bedside (1.8; 95% CI: 1.1-3.0), bending backwards at work (8.3; 95% CI: 5.1-13.4) and pulling objects during work (3.1; 95% CI: 1.7-5.6) were found to be independent statistically significant associated factors of LBP.

Conclusion: The high prevalence of LBP among clinicians and its associated factors indicates that clinicians should maintain good posture and avoid sudden movements during working hours in hospital to reduce this occupational health problem.