Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Original research
Prevalence and risk factors for anxiety and depression disorders in workers with work-related musculoskeletal strain or sprain in British Columbia, Canada: a comparison of men and women using administrative health data


Objective To examine the prevalence and risk factors for medically treated anxiety and depression disorders among men and women with musculoskeletal strain or sprain work injury in British Columbia, Canada.

Methods A retrospective population-based cohort of accepted workers’ compensation lost-time claims from 2000 to 2013 was constructed using linked administrative health data. Anxiety and depression disorders were identified using diagnoses from physician, hospital and pharmaceutical records. The 1-year period prevalence was estimated for the year before and the year after injury. Sociodemographic, clinical and work-related risk factors for prevalent and new onset anxiety and depression disorders were examined using multinomial regression.

Results 13.2% of men and 29.8% of women had medically treated anxiety, depression or both in the year before injury. Only a slight increase (~2%) in the prevalence of these disorders was observed in the year after injury. Somatic and mental comorbidities were both strong risk factors for pre-existing and new onset anxiety and depression for both men and women, but these relationships were stronger for men.

Conclusion Anxiety and depression disorders including those from prior to injury are common in workers with musculoskeletal strain or sprain and are associated with a complicated clinical profile. Gender-sensitive and sex-sensitive mental healthcare is an important consideration for work disability management.

  • epidemiology
  • mental health
  • musculoskeletal
  • disability
  • longitudinal studies

Data availability statement

Data may be obtained from a third party and are not publicly available. The health claims data used for this study were made available to the researchers by Population Data BC ( with permission from the data stewards. The data was made available for the sole purposes of achieving the research objectives and is not available for sharing.

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.