Effectiveness of controlled workplace interventions in reducing lower back disorders

Setenay Tuncel, Yulia Iossifova, Emilio Ravelo, Nancy Daraiseh, Sam Salem

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Background: Researchers have conducted interventions, based on several different risk factors, designed to minimize the prevalence or incidence of lower back disorders in different occupational settings. However, results have been inconsistent for the observed effectiveness of the intervention methods. Objectives: To assess the effectiveness of controlled workplace interventions in preventing the (re)occurrence of lower back disorders (LBDs) in a manufacturing setting. Methods: An electronic and manual literature search was conducted. The methodological quality of the studies was assessed on five categories and a meta-analysis was performed to identify the direction and size of the effect. Because the studies were homogeneous (Q = 0.63), the meta-OR was calculated using the fixed-effect model. Results: The literature survey identified four studies that met the inclusion criteria. These studies possessed a marginal to moderate methodological quality (mean quality score 0.78 of 2.0, SD = 0.22). The meta-OR revealed a statistically insignificant reduction in work-related LBD prevalence (meta-OR = 0.77; 90% CI 0.55–1.07). Conclusions: Due to the statistical insignificance of the meta-OR and the relatively low methodological quality of studies, no definite conclusions can be drawn. More rigorous research with high quality standards is required.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)211-225
Number of pages15
JournalTheoretical Issues in Ergonomics Science
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2006


  • Controlled intervention
  • Low back disorder
  • Manufacturing
  • Meta-analysis
  • Prevention
  • Review

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Human Factors and Ergonomics


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