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Prevalence of skin and back diseases in geriatric care nurses

  • Madeleine Dulon
  • Kathrin Kromark
  • Christoph Skudlik
  • Albert Nienhaus
Original Article

Abstract

Objectives

The prevalence of hand eczema, low back disorders (LBD) and neck/shoulder disorders (NSD) in geriatric nurses and the association of work-related factors with hand eczema, LBD and NSD in geriatric nurses were examined.

Methods

The cross-sectional study comprises 1,390 nurses and nursing aides. Nurses underwent clinical examinations of their hands and their back and answered a questionnaire. Odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (95% CI) for putative risk factors were calculated by logistic regression.

Results

The point prevalence of hand eczema was 18.0%. Disposing factors, like atopic eczema in childhood and dry or itching body skin, were statistically significant risk factors for irritant skin changes. Hand cleaning and hand care were not predictive for hand eczema. LBD was observed in 47.9% and NSD in 16.6% of the nurses. Increasing age and years in the nursing profession, prior treatment of back disorder and psychological stress were significant risk factors for LBD and NSD.

Conclusions

Hand eczema and LBD or NSD are often found in geriatric nurses. Therefore, workplace-related health promotion should be improved for geriatric nurses.

Keywords

Contact dermatitis Low back pain Occupational diseases Nurses Geriatric nursing 

Notes

Acknowledgments

We are grateful to the occupational physicians who performed the orthopedic and dermatological examinations and to all the geriatric nurses who participated in our study. We thank Dr. Soyka for his orthopedic advices and Dr. Pohrt for her effort in training the occupational physicians.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Madeleine Dulon
    • 1
  • Kathrin Kromark
    • 1
  • Christoph Skudlik
    • 2
  • Albert Nienhaus
    • 1
  1. 1.Institution of Statutory Accident Insurance of the Health and Welfare ServiceHamburgGermany
  2. 2.Department Dermatology, Environmental Medicine, Health Theory, Faculty of Human ScienceUniversity of OsnabrückOsnabrückGermany

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