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Ohlendorf D.,Goethe University Frankfurt | Erbe C.,Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz | Hauck I.,Goethe University Frankfurt | Nowak J.,Goethe University Frankfurt | And 4 more authors.
BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders | Year: 2016

Background: In Germany, about 86.7 % of the dentists have stated to suffer from pain in the neck and shoulder region. These findings are predominantly based on surveys. Therefore the objective of this study is to conduct a kinematic analysis of occupational posture in dentistry. Methods: Twenty one dentists (11 f/10 m; age: 40.1 ± 10.4 years) have participated in this examination. The CUELA-System was used to collect kinematic data of the activities on an average dental workday. A detailed, computer-based task analysis took place parallel to the kinematic examination. Through the synchronization of data collected from both measurements, patterns of posture were arranged chronologically and in conjunction with the tasks performed: (I) “treatment” (II) “office” and (III) “other activities”. For the data analysis, characteristic data of joint angular distributions (percentiles P05, P25, P50, P75 and P95) of head, neck and torso at pre-defined tasks were examined and assessed corresponding to ergonomic standards. Results: Forty one percent of tasks executed on an average dental workday can be categorized as the treatment of patients. These tasked are most frequently performed in “straight back” positions (78.7 %), whereas 20.1 % were carried out in a “twisted or inclined” torso posture, 1.1 % “bowed” and only 0.1 % “bowed and twisted/inclined to the side” upper body position. In particular, it can be observed that in the area of the cervical and thoracic spine the 75th and 95th percentile show worse angular values during treatment than during non-dental tasks. For the period of treatment (at a standardized dental chair construction), a seated position with a strong inclination of the thoracic spine to the right while the lumbar spine is inclined towards the left is adopted. Conclusion: The kinematic analysis of dentists illustrates typical patterns of postures during tasks that are essential to the dental treatment of patients. The postures in the area of the cervical and thoracic spine have higher angular values during treatment compared to other dental tasks. Consistently, appropriate ergonomic design measures to optimize the dental chair and equipment as well as integrated training in ergonomics as part of the study of dentistry to prevent musculoskeletal are recommended. © 2016 The Author(s).

Loading Institute for Occupational Health and Safety IFA of the German Social Accident Insurance DGUV collaborators
Loading Institute for Occupational Health and Safety IFA of the German Social Accident Insurance DGUV collaborators