Journal of Occupational Rehabilitation

, Volume 17, Issue 1, pp 19–32 | Cite as

The Prevalence of and Risk Factors for Neck Pain and Upper Limb Pain among Secondary School Teachers in Hong Kong

  • Thomas T. W. Chiu
  • Peggo K. W. Lam
Original Paper


Objective: To investigate the prevalence and occupational risk factors of neck and upper limb disorders among secondary school teachers. Methods: One hundred secondary schools in Hong Kong were randomly chosen. Every full-time teacher received a questionnaire and a letter describing the purpose of the study. Questionnaires were collected 1 to 3 weeks later. Results: Among 3,100 secondary school teachers, the lifelong prevalence of neck pain and upper limb pain was 69.3% (2091/3018) and 35.8% (1088/3042) respectively. The lifelong cumulative incidence of both neck and upper limb pain was 31.6% (938/2966). Multiple logistic regression analysis showed that gender, age and working in head down posture were identified as risk factors for neck and upper limb pain. High workload, low colleague support and high anxiety were found to be significant on affecting the neck pain and upper limb pain developed after becoming teachers. Conclusions: Neck pain and upper limb pain were highly prevalent in secondary school teachers in Hong Kong. Gender, age, head down posture and some psychological factors were found to be significant risk factors.


Prevalence Risk factors Neck and upper limb pain Teachers 



This study is supported by the Occupational Safety & Health Council Hong Kong (CM/4R/2003/05-11).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Rehabilitation SciencesThe Hong Kong Polytechnic UniversityHung HomHong Kong

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