Objectives: Nurses are extremely exposed to musculoskeletal overloads. Prolonged standing postural balance distributions, functional deficits and pain may affect the symmetry of the load on the feet. The study aimed to assess the distribution of foot load during gait among nurses.
Methods: The sample of this prospective and observational study consisted of 37 female nurses with mean age of 39 years. The Nordic Musculoskeletal Questionnaire (NMQ) was used to evaluate musculoskeletal disturbances and baropodometric gait analysis (BGA) was performed to register distribution of foot load during gait.
Results: We showed that 68% of nurses declare that they know the principles of workplace ergonomics, but only 14% comply with them. NMQ results indicate that as many as 73% of the respondents feel ailments in the “lower back” area. An asymmetry was observed in the load of IV-V of the metatarsal head between the left and right foot (P = .000) and in the load of the left and right lateral part of the heel (P = .028) in the BGA test. Correlations between ailments occurring in the neck area and loading of the lateral arch of the right foot (P = .032) were found. Moreover, the load in this area correlated positively with the occurrence of “lower back” pain (P = .045).
Conclusions: Nurses have asymmetric distribution of foot load during gait, which results in a discrepancy between the loads on the three main support points of the foot and which may affect nurses’ work productivity.
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