Saf Health Work.  2015 Dec;6(4):329-337. 10.1016/

Work-Family Conflict, Task Interruptions, and Influence at Work Predict Musculoskeletal Pain in Operating Room Nurses

  • 1Department of Psychology, University of Bern, Bern, Switzerland.
  • 2Bern University of Applied Sciences, Health, Bern, Switzerland.
  • 3National Centre of Competence in Research, Affective Sciences, University of Geneva, CISA, Geneva, Switzerland.


The aim of this study is to examine the prevalence of musculoskeletal complaints in Swiss operating room (OR) nurses, and to investigate how work-family conflict, work interruptions, and influence at work are related to lumbar and cervical back pain.
Participants in this correlational questionnaire study included 116 OR nurses from eight different hospitals in Switzerland.
We found that 66% of the OR staff suffered from musculoskeletal problems. The most prevalent musculoskeletal complaints were lumbar (52.7%) and cervical pain (38.4%). Furthermore, 20.5% reported pain in the mid spine region, 20.5% in the knees and legs, and 9.8% in the hands and feet. Multiple linear regression analyses showed that work-family conflict (p < 0.05) and interruptions (p < 0.05) significantly predicted lumbar and cervical pain in OR nurses, while influence at work (p < 0.05) only predicted lumbar pain.
These results suggest that reducing the work-family conflict and interruptions at work, as well as offering opportunities to influence one's workplace, help to promote OR nurses' health.


musculoskeletal disorders; nurses; resources; work stressors
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