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Texting on mobile phones and musculoskeletal disorders in young adults: A five-year cohort study

Journal article
Authors Ewa Gustafsson
Sara Thomée
Anna Grimby-Ekman
Mats Hagberg
Published in Applied Ergonomics
Volume 58
Pages 208-214
ISSN 0003-6870
Publication year 2017
Published at Institute of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Community Medicine, Section of Occupational and environmental medicine
Institute of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Community Medicine, Health Metrics
Pages 208-214
Language en
Links dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.apergo.2016.06...
Keywords Neck pain, SMS, Upper extremities
Subject categories Media and Communications, Public health science, Environmental Health and Occupational Health

Abstract

The aim was to examine whether texting on a mobile phone is a risk factor for musculoskeletal disorders in the neck and upper extremities in a population of young adults.In a longitudinal population-based cohort study with Swedish young adults (aged 20-24 years) data were collected via a web-based questionnaire at baseline (n = 7092) and after one and five years. Cross-sectional associations were found between text messaging and reported ongoing symptoms in neck and upper extremities (odds ratios, ORs 1.3-2.0). Among symptom-free at baseline prospective associations were only found between text messaging and new cases of reported symptoms in the hand/fingers (OR 2.0) at one year follow up. Among those with symptoms at baseline prospective associations were found between text messaging and maintained pain in neck/upper back (OR 1.6). The results imply mostly short-term effects, and to a lesser extent, long-term effects on musculoskeletal disorders in neck and upper extremities. © 2016 The Authors.

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