Determinants of economic cost related to low back pain among nurses at a University Hospital

Mau-Roung Lin, Jau Yih Tsauo, Jung Der Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


The objectives of this study were to determine the economic cost related to low back pain (LBP) among nurses, and to identify factors associated with this cost. All 998 nurses at the National Taiwan University Hospital (NTUH) were asked to complete a questionnaire designed to examine whether the nurses had experienced LBP and whether their LBP had been related to the incurring of economic cost between May 1, 1990, and April 30, 1991. Of the 863 respondents, 417 had had LBP and 102 of these had incurred economic costs related to the LBP. Personal interviews of the 102 nurses, as well as of an additional four nurses who had resigned due to LBP within the 12 months, were performed to determine the related economic costs. The total monthly costs over the 12 months ranged from U.S. $105,405 to $149,083. Twenty percent of the 106 cases were responsible for 70% of the total overall cost. There was no difference in demographics between the two groups of non-LBP and LBP-without-cost. However, statistical analysis using logistic regression showed that the occurrence of economic cost was positively associated with subjective pain, lifting and carrying babies and small children at home, and age or work years or parity. In addition, multiple linear regression analysis showed that medical cost was positively associated with parity and sick leave; and productivity loss was associated with sick leave, lifting and carrying babies at home, unspecified housework, patient transport, and performing cardiopulmonary resuscitation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)257-263
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Journal of Occupational and Environmental Health
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1996
Externally publishedYes


  • Economic cost
  • Human capital
  • Low back pain
  • Nurses

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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