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Individual and occupational determinants of low back pain according to various definitions of low back pain
  1. Anna Ozguler,
  2. Annette Leclerc,
  3. Marie-France Landre,
  4. Françoise Pietri-Taleb,
  5. Isabelle Niedhammer
  1. INSERM U88, Hôpital National de Saint-Maurice, 14 rue du Val d'Osne, F-94415 Saint-Maurice Cedex, France
  1. Dr A Ozguler


OBJECTIVES To test associations between non-specific low back pain and several risk factors when definitions of low back pain vary.

DESIGN/SETTING/PARTICIPANTS A cross sectional study was set up in 1991, 725 workers from four occupational sectors answered a self administrated questionnaire including the Nordic questionnaire and questions about intensity of pain and individual and occupational factors.

MAIN RESULTS Prevalence of low back pain varied from 8% to 45% according to the definition used. Psychosomatic problems, bending or carrying loads were often associated to low back pain, whereas other risk factors were related to some specific dimensions of the disorder.

CONCLUSIONS Risk factors of low back pain vary with the definition. This could explain inconsistencies found in literature reviews. To be able to compare data, it seems important to be precise what definition is used and to use comparable questionnaires.

  • epidemiology
  • low back pain
  • definition
  • risk factors

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  • Funding: the study was supported by the French Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs and the Ministry of Research, in cooperation with the Club Européen de la Santé.

  • Conflicts of interest: none.