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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2019  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 33-39

Low back pain among workers in a paint factory


1 Ministry of Health, College of Medicine, Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University, Dammam, Saudi Arabia
2 Department of Family and Community Medicine, College of Medicine, Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University, Dammam, Saudi Arabia
3 Department of Public Health, College of Public Health, Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University, Dammam, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Sultan T Al-Otaibi
Department of Family and Community Medicine, College of Medicine, Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University, PO Box 1982, Dammam 31441
Saudi Arabia
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DOI: 10.4103/sjmms.sjmms_81_17

PMID: 30787855

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Background: Back pain is common among factory workers and is responsible for about 25% of workers' compensation cases. However, data on back pain among workers from paint industry in Saudi Arabia are limited. Objectives: The objective of this study is to estimate the prevalence of low back pain and to evaluate the associated risk factors among workers of a paint factory. Materials and Methods: This cross-sectional study used a self-administered questionnaire to elicit data regarding demography, job characteristics and prevalence of low back pain in the past 12 months among workers of a paint factory (n = 102) in the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia. In addition, a scale of low back pain risk was generated for each department by occupational health professionals using interviews and observations. Results: The annual prevalence of low back pain was 44.1%, and it was more common among Saudi workers (67.9%) compared with non-Saudi workers (35.1%). Multivariate analysis indicated significant associations between low back pain and nationality (relative risk [RR] = 1.93; 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.29–2.88), smoking (RR = 1.85; 95% CI = 1.20–2.83) and aerobic exercise (RR = 2.37; 95% CI = 1.19–4.71). Spearman rank correlation showed correlation between the symptom pain scale and smoking (rs = 0.259; P = 0.008), and exercise was associated with lower pain scale scores (rs= −0.241, P = 0.015). Conclusion: This study found that low back pain is common among paint factory workers in the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia. Nationality and smoking are risk factors for low back pain and are associated with each other. Many workers did not exercise, and lack of exercise was associated with an increased risk of low back pain. Reducing smoking and increasing exercise in addition to workplace ergonomic intervention may reduce this frequently occurring problem.


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