Burnout and risk of regional musculoskeletal pain - A prospective study of apparently healthy employed adults

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Musculoskeletal pain (MP) is highly prevalent in the working population, often resulting in chronic disability. Work stress has been shown to be important in the aetiology of MP. Burnout is a unique affective response to chronic exposure to stress and might predict subsequent development of MP. To date, however, all studies in this area have been based on a cross-sectional design, which prevents determining the direction of causality. This prospective study tested the extent to which baseline levels of burnout predict the onset of regional neck/shoulder and/or low back pain, in apparently healthy individuals. The participants were composed of 650 employed men and women who underwent follow-up for 3-5 years. During the follow-up period, 116 workers (17.8%) developed musculoskeletal pain. Logistic regression results indicated that burnout symptoms were associated with a 1.67-fold increased risk of MP [95% confidence interval (CI) = 1.14-1.87], even after adjusting for possible confounding variables (such as white- or blue-collar jobs). Those exhibiting high burnout levels, compared with others, showed higher relative risk of MP [odds ratio (OR) = 2.45, 95%CI = 1.35-4.45]. It was concluded that burnout might be a risk factor for the development of musculoskeletal pain in apparently healthy individuals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)313-321
Number of pages9
JournalStress and Health
Volume25
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2009

Keywords

  • Burnout
  • Musculoskeletal pain
  • Psychosocial factors

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Burnout and risk of regional musculoskeletal pain - A prospective study of apparently healthy employed adults'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this