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|Title||Prevalence and Risk Factors of Low Back Pain among Physical Therapy Professionals in Gaza Strip|
Background and Purpose: The purpose of this study was to determine the prevalence of low back pain (LBP) among physical therapy professionals and to study the risk factors related to it. Also to determine the severity of LBP and to know the physical therapy suggestions and recommendations to reduce the occurrence of LBP. Study design and methodology: The study used a cross-sectionaldesign. It included 130 physiotherapy professionals, 69 males and 61 females working in different places in GS. The researcher used non-probability convenience sampling. The data collected using a structured self-administered questionnaire in the period from 17February to 20 March 2008. The study covered different health institutions in GS including governmental, Non-Governmental, UNRWA clinics and primary health centers. Collected data was entered and analyzed using SPSS (for significance testing, Chi-Square statistical test was used). Results: Almost Fifty seven percent of interviewees reported having LBP at the time of conducting the study and 56.2% suffered from LBP within 3 months prior to filling the questionnaire. In addition, 56.9% suffered from LBP more than 6 months but only 4.6% reported that they used to suffer from LBP before working in physiotherapy field. Additionally, 30.8 % of the study sample had a sick leave due to LBP. The age groups between 26-39 years old were the highest group of LBP suffers with no significant differences between both sexes, level of education, place of work and prevalence of LBP. Surprisingly, 52.7% of those who suffered LBP had more than 7 years of experience, 33.8% had 4-6 years of experience and 13.5% had 1-3 years of experience. The majority of LBP complainers (36.2%) described their pain as throbbing in nature, and 15.4% described LBP as dull pain and as electric among 12.3% however, 11.5% of LBP suffers noted their pain as burning and the remaining 9.2% of the sample described it as numbness in nature. For the degree of LBP severity the majority of Interviewees (60%) labeled their pain as mild or minimal pain, however 20.8% graded their pain as moderate pain and 6.9% said that, they are having severe LBP. Interestingly, about 80% of the study sample improved with treatments of LBP. Furthermore, the results indicated that uncomfortable position among 52.3% of participants, big number of patients (46.1%), prolonged standing (43.1%), bending and twisting (29.2%) were viewed as risk factors for LBP. The results showed that certain occupational factors like lifting, pushing, twisting, sitting, standing or walking long distances also pose risk factors for LBP. The suggested recommendations and advices given by physiotherapy professionals included mainly changing working position frequently and controlling patient's number during daily work (98.5%). Followed by wearing comfortable shoes and avoiding heavy lifting (97.7%) can reduce the occurrence of LBP. also 96.9% reported that adjusting the heights of beds and stools and using patient lifters, practicing daily sports can also reduce the occurrence of LBP, 96% agreed that LBP will probably influence their occupation, 94.6% reported that, taking more rests in between sessions will reduce the occurrence of LBP, 93.8% thought that assistance from others if needed will reduce LBP. The same percentage of interviewees said that sticking to proper praying movements will decrease LBP. Finally, 89.2% recommend that increasing the numbers of physical therapy professional can also minimize the chance of having LBP.Conclusion: The study concluded that most of the physiotherapy professionals had LBP prior and at the time of conducting study, and there were no significant differences between both sexes, level of education, place of work and prevalence of LBP. It also showed that the years in work, the higher the chance of LBP development. Uncomfortable position, big patient numbers, prolonged standing, bending, and twisting were viewed as risk factors for LBP. The findings indicated that there is a clear need for the following modifications inside the working place: proper beds with specific highs; stools and lifters; wearing comfortable shoes during work; practicing daily sport; avoiding heavy lifting and fair distribution of patient load during work. The study also reported that proper movements during prayers may decrease LBP.
|Publisher||the islamic university|
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