Objectives Work-related musculoskeletal disorders (WMSDs) are one of major occupational health problem in developed and developing countries. WMSDs can affect all workers, but literature reviews indicate that women in general report more symptoms. We aimed in this study to evaluate the prevalence of work-related musculoskeletal disorders and possible risk factors among white-collar women workers in Istanbul, Turkey.
Methods The study design was self-reported questionnaire-based cross-sectional study. We collected personal and occupational information and musculoskeletal complaints of women who work in the service sector. We used modified version of a general standardised questionnaire including a picture of the body sites was used for analyses of perceived symptoms of MSDs. For different parts of the body, participants were asked to indicate whether they have had regular or long-lasting complaints. All data was coded for each of the parameters. A p < 0.05 was considered statistically significant.
Results Questionnaires of 550 participants were completed and returned back for analysis. Five hundred seven (%92.2) of female had an university graduate and more. In this study, the age range was between 23 and 60 years. Mean age was 34.77 ± 5.71. MSD was increased with age and (r = 0.127, p = 0.003). Twelve-month prevalence was 89.3% the most prevalent site affected was that of neck (74.9%) followed by back (74.2%) and waist (65.8%) the least frequent disorder was that of elbows (0.7%).
Conclusions The study confirms that white-collar women workers are at higher risk of musculoskeletal disorders. Our findings are similar to the results of the studies on this subject in developed countries. The associations of musculoskeletal disorders with gender and occupational risk factors should be considered especially. Prevention strategies of possible work place risk factors for women can reduce the prevalence of MSDs. It would be helpful to provide continuing education about ergonomic risks in the workplaces.
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