Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10397/17873
Title: Evaluation of physiological work demands and low back neuromuscular fatigue on nurses working in geriatric wards
Authors: Hui, L
Ng, GYF 
Yeung, SSM 
Hui-Chan, CWY
Keywords: Back
Hospital
Work physiology
Issue Date: 2001
Publisher: Pergamon Press
Source: Applied ergonomics, 2001, v. 32, no. 5, p. 479-483 How to cite?
Journal: Applied ergonomics 
Abstract: This study evaluated the physiological demands and low back neuromuscular fatigue patterns following a daytime work shift of 21 female nurses working in geriatric wards. Subjects' heart rate (HR) at work was monitored for 8h and surface electromyogram (EMG) of their back muscle was recorded during a 1-minute horizontal trunk holding test before and after work. Results showed that the nurses had heart rates exceeding 90beats/min in 57% and 110beats/min in 19% of their working hours. The EMG revealed a significant drop in initial median frequency (MF) (p=0.04) and increase in negative slope of the MF/time plot (p<0.001) of the back muscle after work. These suggest that the muscles were fatigued after work. The nurses rated patient lifting, transfer and turning as most physically demanding, and these corresponded to the highest heart rates recorded. The physiological and neuromuscular strain on the nurses indicated that extreme care should be exercised at work, particularly towards the end of a work shift when the muscles have become fatigued.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10397/17873
ISSN: 0003-6870
EISSN: 1872-9126
DOI: 10.1016/S0003-6870(01)00025-4
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