Pain and discomfort in the musculoskeletal system among dentists. A prospective study.Swed Dent J. 1991; 15(5):219-28.SD
The aim of this prospective study was to follow the pain and discomfort among dentists in the Public Dental Service in Malmöhus District and the Municipality of Malmö. In this investigation 311 dentists, who had answered questionnaires in 1987 and in 1990, took part. The prevalence of musculoskeletal pain and discomfort had increased, except the lower back pain and headache. However, the only significant difference was found with respect to the shoulders. As in 1987, female dentists had also in 1990 a higher prevalence of pain and discomfort in the neck and shoulders than their male colleagues. Of the 311 dentists, 262 had symptoms both in 1987 and in 1990. In 1987 forty-nine dentists were free of symptoms, while 24 of them reported symptoms in the locomotor system in 1990. Of the 262 dentists with symptoms in 1987 twenty-four were without symptoms at the follow-up in 1990. The aim of the investigation was also to study the influence of some ergonomic factors on the course of symptoms. However, these ergonomic variables showed a low predictive value for recovery or for the development of pain and discomfort in the locomotor system.