European Agency for Safety and Health at Work

Work-related musculoskeletal disorders: prevalence, costs and demographics in the EU
European Risk Observatory


Table of contents

Executive summary
Policy context
Main findings
Policy pointers
Key messages
1 Introduction
1.1 Background
1.2 Objectives of the project
1.3 Methodology applied
1.4 Structure of the report
2 Causes and consequences of MSDs: a framework
2.1 Defining MSDs and assessing their prevalence
2.2 A multidimensional model of MSDs
3 Prevalence of MSDs
3.1 Self-reported MSDs
3.2 Variation in self-reported MSD prevalence
3.3 Administrative data on MSDs
4 Impact of MSDs
4.1 Health outcomes
4.2 Employment and work outcomes
5 Exposure to risk factors
5.1 Physical factors at work
5.2 Organisational and psychosocial factors at work
5.3 Workers’ opinions on the relationship between work and health
6 Prevention of MSDs
6.1 Prevention by establishments
6.2 Impact of awareness on self-reported MSD prevalence
7 Main results
7.1 Prevalence of MSDs
7.2 Impact of MSDs
7.3 Exposure to risk factors
7.4 Preventive measures
8 Main conclusions and policy points
8.1 High prevalence of MSDs
8.2 Exposure to risk factors
8.3 Economic impact and social costs of MSDs
8.4 MSDs: a preventive approach
8.5 The need to get a more complete data picture on MSDs
8.6 MSDs are in need of targeted interventions
8.7 Promoting musculoskeletal health among the working population in collaboration with other policy areas (public health sector, education sector, etc.)
8.8 Improving data
9 Annexes
Annex 1 - Identification and analysis of relevant data sources
Annex 2 - Exploratory logistic regressions explaining MSD prevalence
Annex 3 - Exploratory cluster analysis
Cluster analysis on risk factors
Cluster analysis on MSDs and comorbidities
Annex 4 - Surveys and administrative data sources


© European Agency for Safety and Health atWork, 2019
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