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Poster-discussion: Neck and upper limb disorders
Personal, biomechanical and psychosocial risk factors for neck disorders in the working population
  1. Audrey Petit Le Manac'h1,
  2. Catherine Ha2,
  3. Julie Bodin1,
  4. Elsa Parot-Schinkel3,
  5. Aline Ramond-Roquin3,
  6. Annette Leclerc4,
  7. Ellen Imbernon2,
  8. Yves Roquelaure1
  1. 1Université d’Angers, Angers, France
  2. 2InVS, Saint Maurice, France
  3. 3CHU Angers, Angers, France
  4. 4Inserm U1018, Villejuif, France


Objectives To assess the prevalence and risk factors for non-specific neck disorder (ND) in a representative French working population characterised by various levels of exposure to work-related constraints.

Methods The study population comprised 3710 workers (2161 men, 1549 women, mean age = 38.7 years) out of 184 600 surveyed by the 83 occupational physicians between 2002 and 2005. ND during the last 12 months and the preceding 7 days were assessed using the Nordic questionnaire. Personal risk factors and work exposure were assessed by a self-administered questionnaire. Associations between ND during the preceding 7 days and personal and occupational factors were analysed using logistic regression modeling.

Results Forty percent of these workers reported ND at least 1 day during the previous 12 months and 19% during the preceding 7 days. Age (OR=1.18–1.94), female gender (OR=1.94 95% CI (1.6 to 2.3)), previous history of upper limb musculoskeletal disorders (OR=1.44 (1.2 to 1.8)) and arthritis (OR=3.30 (2.0 to 5.4)) were associated with ND. Higher risk of ND was observed in case of arm abduction (OR=1.46 (1.2 to 1.7)) and neck flexion (OR=1.41 (1.2 to 1.8)) during at least 2 h per day. High psychological demand at work (OR=1.27 (1.1 to 1.5)) and low supervisor social support (OR=1.42 (1.2 to 1.7)) were associated with ND. Workers whose work pace depended of outside request (OR=1.31 (1.09 to 1.57)) or colleague's work (OR=1.25 (1.03 to 1.51)) were more likely to suffer from ND.

Conclusions The relative importance of individual, biomechanical, organisational and psychosocial risk factors for ND was similar. This study highlighted several work-related risk factors which can potentially be modified.

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