Effect of job rotation on need for recovery, musculoskeletal complaints, and sick leave due to musculoskeletal complaints: A prospective study among refuse collectors
Article first published online: 12 APR 2005
Copyright © 2005 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
American Journal of Industrial Medicine
Volume 47, Issue 5, pages 394–402, May 2005
How to Cite
Kuijer, P. P. F.M., van der Beek, A. J., van Dieën, J. H., Visser, B. and Frings-Dresen, M. H.W. (2005), Effect of job rotation on need for recovery, musculoskeletal complaints, and sick leave due to musculoskeletal complaints: A prospective study among refuse collectors. Am. J. Ind. Med., 47: 394–402. doi: 10.1002/ajim.20159
- Issue published online: 12 APR 2005
- Article first published online: 12 APR 2005
- Manuscript Accepted: 7 FEB 2005
- Dutch Health Research & Development Council/Medical Sciences (ZonMw). Grant Number: 97110120,8 SK/VB
- job rotation;
- musculoskeletal complaints;
- low back pain;
- sickness absence;
- occupational epidemiology;
- refuse collecting
Job rotation might be an effective preventive measure to reduce the prevalence of musculoskeletal complaints, although its effect has not been yet established. The aim of the present study is to evaluate the effect of job rotation in refuse collecting on need for recovery, prevalence of musculoskeletal complaints, and sick leave due to musculoskeletal complaints.
A 1-year prospective study among refuse collectors was performed, using standardized questionnaires. Job rotation was performed between collecting two-wheeled containers and driving a refuse truck. The experimental groups of rotating refuse collectors at t0 and t1 (group R-R) and non-rotating refuse collectors at t0 and rotating refuse collectors at t1 (group NR-R) were compared with a reference group of non-rotating refuse collectors at t0 and t1 (group NR-NR).
The adjusted need for recovery of group R-R was marginally significantly lower than need for recovery of the reference group. Groups R-R and NR-R had a more than two times higher risk for complaints of the low back than the reference group. No other significant results were found.
Job rotation seemed to coincide with a reduced need for recovery and was associated with an increased risk of low back complaints. No effects were found on sick leave due to musculoskeletal complaints. The results might be influenced by the healthy worker selection effect in the reference group and its inverse in the rotating groups. Am. J. Ind. Med. 47:394–402, 2005. © 2005 Wiley-Liss, Inc.