WASHINGTON, Sept. 29 (UPI) -- The higher a healthcare worker's work-family conflict the greater the risk of neck and other types of musculoskeletal pain, U.S. researchers say.
Seung-Sup Kim of the George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services said the findings fit into a growing body of evidence showing that conflict between increased workloads or long hours can spill over into domestic life and adversely affect workers on the front lines of patient care.
Kim and principal investigator Glorian Sorensen, a professor of society, human development and health at the Harvard School of Public Health, and colleagues, conducted a survey among 2,000 hospital workers who provided direct patient care in two large Boston hospitals.
The team assessed work-family conflict with questions such as: "The amount of time my job takes up makes it difficult to fulfill family or personal responsibilities."
The study, published online in the American Journal of Industrial Medicine, found the nurses and other employees who reported high conflict between their job duties and obligations at home had about a double the chance of suffering from neck or shoulder pain, while workers with the highest work-life imbalance had nearly a three times greater risk of reporting arm pain during that period.