The ergonomic impact of patient body mass index on surgeon posture during simulated laparoscopy.Appl Ergon. 2021 Nov; 97:103501.AE
Laparoscopy is a cornerstone of modern surgical care, with clear advantages for the patients. However, it has also been associated with inducing upper body musculoskeletal disorders amongst surgeons due to their propensity to assume non-neutral postures. Further, there is a perception that patients with high body mass indexes (BMI) exacerbate these factors. Therefore, surgeon upper body postures were objectively quantified using inertial measurement units and the LUBA ergonomic framework was used to assess posture during laparoscopic training on patient models that simulated BMIs of 20, 30, 40 and 50 kg/m2. In all surgeons the posture of the upper body significantly worsened during simulated laparoscopic surgery on the BMI 50 kg/m2 model as compared to the baseline BMI model of 20 kg/m2. These findings suggest that performing laparoscopic surgery on patients with high BMIs increases the prevalence of non-neutral posture and may further increase the risk of musculoskeletal disorders in surgeons.