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Background: Work-related Musculoskeletal disorder (WMSDs) are multifactorial occupational disorders, having high morbidity and economic cost. Heavy engineering maintenance personnel involved in manual material handling, physical load with awkward posture poses high risk of WMSDs. Objectives: This study investigates the prevalence of work-related Musculoskeletal disorder (WMSD) among Indian defence personnel involved in heavy engineering maintenance work. Setting and Design: A cross-sectional survey was conducted with participant consents. Materials and Methods: 379 defence personnel involved in heavy engineering maintenance task were assessed for WMSDs, using NMQ. The effect of risk factors such as age, working hours, BMI, smoking and type of job on WMSDs was analysed. Statistical Analysis: Data analysis was done using using logistic regression with SPSS version 14. Results: 67.54 % personnel (N=379) reported WMSDs with total of 704 WMSDs. 51.45% reported multiple WMSDs and 16.09% had single WMSDs. Highest WMSDs were reported in low back (44.85%), followed by knee (28.23%), elbow/forearm (15.83%), ankle/foot (22.95%), shoulder (18.46%), upper back (18.46%), neck (15.83%) and wrist/fingers (12.92%). Long working hours (p=0. 000; OR=1.83, 1.58-2.12) and smoking habits (p=0.000; OR=5.52, 3.43-8.48) are significantly correlated with WMSDs. Automobile me chanics (p=.045; OR=2.64, 95% CI=1.04-6.72) and welders (p= 0.034; OR =2.32, 95% CI = 1.21 – 4.36) are at higher risk of WMSDs. Conclusion: There is a high prevalence of WMSDs among Indian defence mechanics. It is suggested that ergonomics training is required for maintenance workers. The detrimental effect of smoking is also noted with the prevalence of WMSDs.


Defence, Heavy Engineering, Maintenance, Mechanics, Work Related Musculoskeletal Disorders
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