The objective of this study was to examine patterns of musculoskeletal pain episodes over time. We conducted a one-year follow-up study among 275 eldercare workers with measurements of musculoskeletal pain (low back pain (LBP) and neck/shoulder pain (NSP)) and pain-related work interference (PWI) reported via text message every four weeks. We found a constant, high four-weekly prevalence of LBP and NSP (between 61% and 72%). The distributions of pain episodes for LBP and NSP were similar with approximately 30% of the episodes being 7 days or less per four weeks. There was also a high recurrence of pain, with 33% reporting LBP or NSP every four weeks. In addition, 24% had pain at every measurement in both the low back and neck/shoulder regions combined throughout the year. On days with LBP or NSP, approximately 59% also reported interference with work, and 18% of the eldercare workers reported that pain interfered with their work all measurements throughout the year. A high proportion of eldercare workers reported pain every four weeks throughout the year and the four-weekly prevalence of pain remained high and constant on a group level. During most days with pain, eldercare workers were hampered in their regular work activities.

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International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Department of Public Health

Rasmussen, C.D.N., Karstad, K., Sogaard, K., Rugulies, R., Burdorf, A., & Holtermann, A. (2019). Patterns in the Occurrence and Duration of Musculoskeletal Pain and Interference with Work among Eldercare Workers-A One-Year Longitudinal Study with Measurements Every Four Weeks. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 16(16). doi:10.3390/ijerph16162990