PURPOSE: Housework is a form of regular manual work that is often performed by women. Little is known about the entity of biomechanical exposure to the upper limbs during typical housework tasks. This study aims to make an initial quantitative estimate of some such exposures. METHODS: We conducted objective assessments of biomechanical exposure to the upper limbs during nine frequent housework tasks performed by 12 women without domestic help. For the main evaluations, we implemented five instruments: the OCRA (Occupational Repetitive Actions) checklist; OREGE (Outil de Repérage et d'Evaluation des Gestes); the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) assessment of hand activity levels (HAL); RULA (Rapid Upper Limb Assessment); and the full checklist of the Washington State Department of Labor and Industries. RESULTS: The ACGIH evaluation suggested light/moderate biomechanical exposure levels, as did the RULA. For the OCRA checklist and OREGE, time-weighted average scores (not adjusted by a duration multiplier because women may also routinely undergo biomechanical loads in other domestic or professional settings) were: OCRA checklist, 12.0 ("mild risk", light red) and OREGE, 10.2 ("not recommended"). The full checklist of Washington State Department of Labor and Industries showed that repetitive/similar movements (for >2 h/day) accompanied by other risk factors such as ≥30° bending of the wrists, ≥45° stretched wrists, ≥30° ulnar stretches, and manual force. CONCLUSIONS: Housework commonly entails light-moderate biomechanical loads that nevertheless could conceivably contribute to the genesis/worsening of musculoskeletal disorders. Biomechanical loads experienced by women during housework deserve greater consideration in epidemiologic studies of musculoskeletal disorders.

Loads of housework? Biomechanical assessments of the upper limbs in women performing common household tasks

CURTI, STEFANIA;VIOLANTE, FRANCESCO SAVERIO;MATTIOLI, STEFANO
2012

Abstract

PURPOSE: Housework is a form of regular manual work that is often performed by women. Little is known about the entity of biomechanical exposure to the upper limbs during typical housework tasks. This study aims to make an initial quantitative estimate of some such exposures. METHODS: We conducted objective assessments of biomechanical exposure to the upper limbs during nine frequent housework tasks performed by 12 women without domestic help. For the main evaluations, we implemented five instruments: the OCRA (Occupational Repetitive Actions) checklist; OREGE (Outil de Repérage et d'Evaluation des Gestes); the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) assessment of hand activity levels (HAL); RULA (Rapid Upper Limb Assessment); and the full checklist of the Washington State Department of Labor and Industries. RESULTS: The ACGIH evaluation suggested light/moderate biomechanical exposure levels, as did the RULA. For the OCRA checklist and OREGE, time-weighted average scores (not adjusted by a duration multiplier because women may also routinely undergo biomechanical loads in other domestic or professional settings) were: OCRA checklist, 12.0 ("mild risk", light red) and OREGE, 10.2 ("not recommended"). The full checklist of Washington State Department of Labor and Industries showed that repetitive/similar movements (for >2 h/day) accompanied by other risk factors such as ≥30° bending of the wrists, ≥45° stretched wrists, ≥30° ulnar stretches, and manual force. CONCLUSIONS: Housework commonly entails light-moderate biomechanical loads that nevertheless could conceivably contribute to the genesis/worsening of musculoskeletal disorders. Biomechanical loads experienced by women during housework deserve greater consideration in epidemiologic studies of musculoskeletal disorders.
Apostoli P.; Sala E.; Curti S.; Cooke R.M.; Violante F.S.; Mattioli S.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11585/107004
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