1014 Is workplace bullying an independent risk factor for musculoskeletal disorders? a study with brazilian civil servants

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Abstract

Introduction

Workplace bullying has been described as an important determinant for many health outcomes, such as depression, suicidal ideation and sleeping problems. However its role as a possible determinant of musculoskeletal disorders is still on discussion. We aimed to evaluate the independent association between workplace bullying and neck/upper limb musculoskeletal pain in a sample of Brazilian civil servants.

Methods

Cross-sectional study with a sample of 1616 workers from the Brazilian Federal Judiciary. The Negative Acts Questionnaire (NAQ-r) was used to measure bullying at work and an adapted version of the Nordic Musculoskeletal Questionnaire (NMQ) was used to evaluate neck and upper limb musculoskeletal pain. Poisson and logistic regressions were used to test and estimate associations of interest, controlling for confounders.

Results

The overall prevalence of frequent (weekly or daily) neck and upper limb musculoskeletal pain was 49.9%. The prevalence of workplace bullying was 17.0%. In the regression analysis controlling for social, demographic and occupational confounders, workers exposed to bullying (weekly or daily negative acts) presented a 2.04-fold higher prevalence of neck and upper limb musculoskeletal pain than those who did not suffer bullying (p<0.001).

Discussion

Our findings suggest that workplace bullying can be an independent risk factor for musculoskeletal pain in workers. New longitudinal studies are needed in order elucidate the role of workplace bullying in determining occupational musculoskeletal disorders.

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