Disclosure Statement: The authors of this study have no conflicting or competing interests regarding the results or conclusions outlined in the study described in this manuscript.
Carpal tunnel syndrome among ewe dairy farmers in Sardinia, Italy
Article first published online: 8 JAN 2013
Copyright © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
American Journal of Industrial Medicine
Volume 56, Issue 8, pages 889–896, August 2013
How to Cite
Rosecrance, J., Marras, T., Murgia, L., Tartaglia, R. and Baldasseroni, A. (2013), Carpal tunnel syndrome among ewe dairy farmers in Sardinia, Italy. Am. J. Ind. Med., 56: 889–896. doi: 10.1002/ajim.22153
- Issue published online: 19 JUL 2013
- Article first published online: 8 JAN 2013
- Manuscript Accepted: 6 DEC 2012
- United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). Grant Number: CDC NIOSH 5U5O OH008085 and CDC NIOSH T42OH009229-04
- carpal tunnel syndrome;
The region of Sardinia, Italy is known internationally for the production of cheeses made from ewe's milk. Although the use of automated milking equipment is available in ewe dairy operations, traditional hand milking is still performed on many ewe farms. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the prevalence of carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) among farmers that manually milk ewes.
Worker demographics, upper limb symptoms, and electrophysiologic studies were obtained on 76 ewe farmers recruited from a random sample of 109 in northern Sardinia. Characteristic hand symptoms and electrophysiologic studies were used in the case definition of CTS.
Of the 76 farmers evaluated, 42 (55.3%) fit the case definition of CTS in at least one hand. Assuming that all non-respondents did not have CTS, the CTS prevalence ratio would have been 38.5% (42/109) among the randomized sample of ewe farmers.
These findings suggest that CTS is a significant occupational health issue for ewe farmers that continue the traditional methods of manual milking. The recent trend in automated ewe milking machines may help reduce the prevalence of CTS among the next generation of Italian ewe farmers. Am. J. Ind. Med. 56:889–896, 2013. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.