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. 2016;55(4):841-848.
doi: 10.3233/WOR-162451.

Ergonomics in Gynecologists' Daily Practice: A Nationwide Survey in The Netherlands

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Ergonomics in Gynecologists' Daily Practice: A Nationwide Survey in The Netherlands

Chantal C J Alleblas et al. Work. .

Abstract

Background: Gynecologists are exposed to multiple risk factors for developing physical complaints. To enhance the workplace ergonomics in gynecological practice, a more detailed insight about job content and associated demands is necessary to subsequently decrease the exposure to risk factors.

Objective: The aim of this study was to investigate the prevalence of physical complaints and the presence of ergonomic constraints in Dutch gynecological practice.

Methods: A questionnaire was distributed among the 1200 members of the Dutch Society of Obstetrics and Gynecology. It consisted of 52 Dutch questions derived from the validated Dutch Musculoskeletal Questionnaire.

Results: A total of 227 respondents completed the questionnaire (response rate 18.9%). Overall, 99.5% of the respondents rated their health status as reasonable or good. However, the twelve-month prevalence of physical complaints in one or more body part was 89.4%. Sustained adverse body postures were particularly reported for performing abdominal, and endoscopic surgery, and for assisting in vaginal surgery. Limited workspace, instruments, and patient size were reported by more than 60% of the respondents as constraints for adopting a neutral body posture during vaginal, endoscopic and abdominal surgery respectively.

Conclusion: The results emphasize the necessity of enhancing ergonomics in gynecological practice. Better ergonomic circumstances will most likely benefit both the health of the gynecologists as well as the quality of surgical care.

Keywords: Musculoskeletal disorders; health care; physical work; work organization; workplace ergonomics.

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