Effects of Ergomotor Intervention on Improving Occupational Health in Workers with Work-Related Neck-Shoulder Pain

Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2019 Dec 9;16(24):5005. doi: 10.3390/ijerph16245005.


(1) Background: Work-related neck and shoulder pain (WRNSP) are common problems, and past occupational research has focused on ergonomic interventions such as adjusting workstations while physiotherapists have traditionally focused on teaching exercises to improve posture and movement control in the clinical setting. The current study aimed to integrate these two approaches and evaluate the immediate and long-term effects of such interventions on occupational exposure outcomes. (2) Methods: A total of 101 patients diagnosed with WRNSP were randomized into 2 groups: Control (CO) group (n = 50) and ergomotor (EM) group (n = 51). Participants in the control group had 12 weeks of usual care (conventional physiotherapy) while participants in the EM group received an integrated program with tailor-made motor control training and ergonomic advice for 12 weeks. (3) Results: Both groups achieved significant improvement in pain and functional outcomes at post-intervention. The EM group also reported significantly improved scores in terms of perceived exertion in the job-related physical demands (JRPD) and the short form workstyle questionnaires compared to the control group. (4) Conclusions: The results suggest that ergomotor intervention may be more effective in producing favorable occupational health outcomes compared to conventional physiotherapy.

Keywords: ergonomics; motor control; neck pain; work-related musculoskeletal disorders.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Ergonomics / methods*
  • Exercise Therapy / methods*
  • Female
  • Hong Kong
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Musculoskeletal Pain / therapy*
  • Neck Pain / therapy*
  • Occupational Diseases / etiology
  • Occupational Diseases / therapy*
  • Occupational Exposure / adverse effects*
  • Physical Therapy Modalities
  • Shoulder Pain / therapy*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Young Adult