Content » Vol 44, Issue 8

Original report

Incidence of and risk factors for musculoskeletal symptoms in the neck and low-back during severe flooding in Bangkok in 2011

Rattaporn Sihawong, Prawit Janwantanakul, Praneet Pensri
Department of Physical Therapy, Faculty of Allied Health Sciences, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand
DOI: 10.2340/16501977-1013


Objective: To examine whether the incidences of neck and low-back symptoms were elevated during the severe floods that occurred in Bangkok, Thailand in 2011, and to explore flood-related risk factors for neck and low-back symptoms.
Design: Prospective cohort design.
Methods: Severe flooding occurred in Bangkok and surrounding neighbourhoods between October and December, 2011. After the flood had subsided (January 2012), 377 healthy office workers, who were already taking part in a study on musculoskeletal symptoms, were asked about their contact with floodwater. Data were gathered from subjects, who had reported no neck and low-back symptoms at the end of September 2011 and who were affected by the flood. Two regression models for the outcomes of 3-month incidence of neck and low-back symptoms, respectively, were performed.
Result: Eighty-two percent of the subjects were affected by the flood. No flood-related factor was found to associate significantly with either neck or low-back symptoms. However, neck symptoms may be associated with commuting frequently through flooded areas, and low-back symptoms may be associated with the subjects’ homes or workplaces being flooded.
Conclusion: These findings indicate that more attention needs to be paid to the problem of musculoskeletal symptoms during flooding in urban areas, and that preventive measures are required.

Lay Abstract


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