Spring 2022 Occupational Health
The importance of work and health in neuromusculoskeletal assessment
This article, based on a case study that was submitted as part of the Association of Chartered Physiotherapists in Occupational Health and Ergonomics’ (ACPOHE) registered membership process, will help demonstrate specific considerations when dealing with the working age population in a private practice setting. It encourages focus on work factors, using “work” as an outcome measure. It will cover how to have specific work conversations, how to obtain consent from an occupational health perspective and how to apply a biopsychosocial approach, outcome measures and functional testing relevant to the patient’s job role. This will inform an “evidence-based” approach, facilitate successful return to work and improve overall patient outcomes.
Tracey AtkinsonRead article here
Workplace assessment for occupational health: a case study
The article that starts on page 4 highlights the importance of a workplace assessment, and the benefits an effective assessment can deliver in the long-term management and prevention of work relevant musculoskeletal disorders. Here, the authors follow on from the discussion of the assessment and treatment of the individual employee and explain the combined process of clinical follow-up with a workplace assessment undertaken by the physiotherapist with specialist skills in occupational health and ergonomics who had undertaken the two initial clinical assessments described in the case study on page 6.
Musculoskeletal health and wellbeing for early years and primary teachers
This article explores the findings of recent research relating to the musculoskeletal health and wellbeing of early years and primary education professionals. It identifies risk factors and suggests practical interventions to improve occupational health and wellbeing.
Playing-related musculoskeletal disorders in musicians
There has long been a lack of awareness of the incidence of playing related musculoskeletal disorders (PRMD) amongst musicians, particularly those who perform music professionally. Long rehearsal and performance hours, sitting and playing in asymmetrical, unnatural prolonged positions, sometimes with unsuitable seating, all of which can result in developing compensatory, maladaptive movement patterns that can manifest in a range of playing related issues. Treatment of musicians often requires a knowledge of likely presentations, and a deep understanding of the most appropriate management tools that will return musicians to full fitness for their workplace, i.e. playing and performance.
Reconciling the spine flexion debate: are we all doomed to fail?
A major concern of strength coaches, physiotherapists and other healthcare professionals is teaching people to NOT bend their spines when they lift things. It is assumed that spinal flexion is an independent risk factor for low back injury and pain. Many therapists still have negative beliefs about the structural resiliency of the spine and consider lifting technique to be factor related to spine pain and injury (Nolan et al 2019). In a recent paper (Howe & Lehman 2021) the different research areas investigating the role of spinal flexion and low back injury were reviewed, including one large research stream that involved cadaveric models of tissue injury. This article considers the ramifications of the cadaveric animal models that investigate spinal loading and injury mechanisms, and how this might inform clinical practice