Efficacy of the Revised NIOSH Lifting Equation to Predict Risk of Low Back Pain Due to Manual Lifting: Expanded Cross-Sectional Analysis


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Abstract

Objective:To evaluate whether the Revised NIOSH Lifting Equation (RNLE) is a valid tool for assessing risk of low back pain (LBP) due to manual lifting by using combined data from two cross-sectional studies of 1-year prevalence.Methods:Results from a symptom and occupational history questionnaire and RNLE analysis for 677 subjects employed in 125 manual lifting jobs at nine industrial sites were combined from two studies.Results:The odds of LBP increased as the lifting index (LI) increased from 1.0 to 3.0. A statistically significant odds ratio (OR) was found for both the 1 < LI ≤ 2 (OR = 1.81) and the 2 < LI ≤ 3 categories (OR = 2.26). For jobs with an LI value greater than 3.0, however, the OR remained nonsignificant. The 2 < LI ≤ 3 group remained statistically significant after adjusting for age, gender, body mass index, and psychosocial factors.Conclusions:It is clear that as the LI increases, the risk of LBP increases. Longitudinal studies are needed.

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