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1.  Musculoskeletal health and work ability in physically demanding occupations: study protocol for a prospective field study on construction and health care workers 
BMC Public Health  2014;14(1):1075.
Background
Musculoskeletal disorders have a profound impact on individual health, sickness absence and early retirement, particularly in physically demanding occupations. Demographics are changing in the developed countries, towards increasing proportions of senior workers. These senior workers may have particular difficulties coping with physically demanding occupations while maintaining good health.
Previous studies investigating the relationship between physical work demands and musculoskeletal disorders are mainly based on self-reported exposures and lack a prospective design. The aim of this paper is to describe the background and methods and discuss challenges for a field study examining physical demands in construction and health care work and their prospective associations with musculoskeletal disorders, work ability and sickness absence.
Methods and design
This protocol describes a prospective cohort study on 1200 construction and health care workers. Participants will answer a baseline questionnaire concerning musculoskeletal complaints, general health, psychosocial and organizational factors at work, work demands, work ability and physical activity during leisure. A shorter questionnaire will be answered every 6th months for a total of two years, together with continuous sickness absence monitoring during this period. Analysis will prospectively consider associations between self-reported physical demands and musculoskeletal disorders, work ability and sickness absence. To obtain objective data on physical exposures, technical measurements will be collected from two subgroups of N = 300 (Group A) and N = 160 (Group B) during work and leisure. Both group A and B will be given a physical health examination, be tested for physical capacity and physical activity will be measured for four days. Additionally, muscle activity, ground reaction force, body positions and physical activity will be examined during one workday for Group B. Analysis of associations between objectively measured exposure data and the outcomes described above will be done separately for these subpopulations.
Discussion
The field study will at baseline produce objectively measured data on physical demands in the construction and health care occupations. In combination with clinical measurements and questionnaire data during follow-up, this will provide a solid foundation to prospectively investigate relationships between physical demands at work and development of musculoskeletal disorders, work ability and sickness absence.
doi:10.1186/1471-2458-14-1075
PMCID: PMC4203897  PMID: 25318646
Physical exposures; Work ability; Musculoskeletal disorders; Accelerometer; Heart rate monitoring; Electromyography; Ground reaction force
2.  Computer work and musculoskeletal disorders of the neck and upper extremity: A systematic review 
Background
This review examines the evidence for an association between computer work and neck and upper extremity disorders (except carpal tunnel syndrome).
Methods
A systematic critical review of studies of computer work and musculoskeletal disorders verified by a physical examination was performed.
Results
A total of 22 studies (26 articles) fulfilled the inclusion criteria. Results show limited evidence for a causal relationship between computer work per se, computer mouse and keyboard time related to a diagnosis of wrist tendonitis, and for an association between computer mouse time and forearm disorders. Limited evidence was also found for a causal relationship between computer work per se and computer mouse time related to tension neck syndrome, but the evidence for keyboard time was insufficient. Insufficient evidence was found for an association between other musculoskeletal diagnoses of the neck and upper extremities, including shoulder tendonitis and epicondylitis, and any aspect of computer work.
Conclusions
There is limited epidemiological evidence for an association between aspects of computer work and some of the clinical diagnoses studied. None of the evidence was considered as moderate or strong and there is a need for more and better documentation.
doi:10.1186/1471-2474-11-79
PMCID: PMC2874766  PMID: 20429925
3.  The impact of psychosocial and organizational working conditions on the mental health of female cleaning personnel in Norway 
Background
This study examined the association between psychosocial and organizational work conditions and mental health among women employed in the cleaning profession in Norway.
Methods
Self-report questionnaires were mailed to 661 cleaning staff personnel from seven cleaning organizations in seven different cities across Norway. The response rate was 64%, of which 374 (88%) respondents were women. The questionnaires assessed socio-demographic information and employment history, work organization, and psychosocial working conditions. The Hopkins Symptoms Checklist (HSCL-25) was included to assess mental health.
Results
On average, respondents were 43 years old and reported 10.8 years of experience working in the cleaning industry. The proportion of women scoring a HSCL-25 equal to or above 1.75 was 17.5%, which was higher than the average prevalence of mental health problems among working Norwegian women (8.4%). A factor analysis of the questions specific to the psychosocial work environment identified the following four underlying dimensions: leadership, co-workers, time pressure/control, and information/knowledge. Two of these, poor satisfaction with leadership (OR = 3.6) and poor satisfaction with co-workers (OR = 2.3), were significantly related to mental health. In addition, having contact with colleagues less than once a day (OR = 2.4) and not being ethnically Norwegian (OR = 3.0) increased the risk for mental health problems.
Conclusion
Mental health problems are frequent among female cleaning professionals in Norway. Our results indicate that quality of leadership, collaboration with co-workers, and ethnicity were significantly associated with mental health.
doi:10.1186/1745-6673-1-24
PMCID: PMC1636641  PMID: 17078871

Results 1-3 (3)