Work-Related Musculoskeletal Disorder (WRMSD): Findings Among Employees of a Healthcare Research Institute

Pei Pei Heng1, Nur Izzati. T1, Kuang Hock Lim1, Balvinder Singh Gill 1,  Mohd Yusoff. A2

1Institute for Medical Research, Ministry of Health Malaysia, Jalan Pahang, 50588, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. 

2Perdana University, Block B and D1, MAEPS Building, MARDI Complex Jalan MAEPS Perdana, 43400 Seri Kembangan, Selangor, Malaysia.

* Corresponding author (email:

Page 23 – 30   |   Vol. 5 No. 1 2020   |    Available online on 1 Jun 2020


Work-related musculoskeletal disorder (WRMSD) is a universal problem that varies across professions. It has been recognized as the most common and difficult occupational health issue by literature. This study aimed to examine the prevalence of self-reported positive WRMSD symptoms and its associated risk factors among healthcare personnel in research institute in Malaysia. All staffs from the major research institute were invited to participate in the study. A pre-validated self-administered Medical History and Symptoms Survey Checklist from Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety was adapted as a study tool. Data was analyzed using SPSS 20.0 employing descriptive analysis and multivariable logistic regression. The response rate was 82% (516/630). Almost half of the respondents reported neck (48.7%), shoulder (54.2%), upper back (42.2%) and lower back pain (47%) which lasted at least two days in the past year. Multivariable logistic regression substantiated prolonged computer use was significantly more likely to cause neck pain (aOR 2.63, 95%CI 1.32-5.63), shoulder pain (aOR 2.87, 95%CI 1.44-5.74), and lower back pain (aOR 2.97, 95%CI 1.14-5.63); while respondents with abnormally high body mass index (BMI) were more likely to report lower limb pain (aOR 0.57, 95%CI 0.36-0.92). Substantial proportion of high risk employees exposed to the workplace ergonomics hazard was identified therefore specific tailored preventive and rehabilitation measures is of paramount importance to ensure the ergonomics wellness among employees.


WRMSDs, Research Institute employees, Medical History and Symptoms Survey Checklist, self-administered

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Human Factors & Ergonomics Journal (HFEJ), eISSN: 2590-3705  is the official Journal of Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Malaysia.  The journal is published on a biannual basis. HFEJ aims to address current research in the field of Ergonomics in addition to the broad coverage of cognitive ergonomics, user experience, physical ergonomics and others such as transportation, industrial design and industrial engineering. HFEJ is a member of, and subscribes to the principles of the COPE (Committee on Publication Ethics), as such we only accept original work.