Prevalence of Self-Reported Work-Related Lower Back Pain and Its Associated Factors in Ethiopia: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

J Environ Public Health. 2021 Sep 23;2021:6633271. doi: 10.1155/2021/6633271. eCollection 2021.


INTRODUCTION: Low back pain is the commonest musculoskeletal disorder affecting every socioeconomic group of the world’s population. The lifetime risk of developing low back pain is about 60%-80%. The pooled prevalence and associated factors of low back pain have not yet been determined in Ethiopia. Thus, this study was aimed at assessing the overall prevalence of low back pain and its associated factors in Ethiopia.

METHODS: A systematic search of PubMed, Scopus, Science Direct, and Google Scholar for observational studies reporting data on the prevalence and associated factors of low back pain was conducted. Relevant data were extracted with a standardized data extraction excel form. Stata 14 was employed for the meta-analysis. Heterogeneity was assessed by Cochran’s Q test and I 2 values of a forest plot. Publication bias was checked using a funnel plot and Egger’s test. A random-effects model was used in the analysis.

RESULT: A total of thirty-two studies were included for the systematic review. Twenty-four and sixteen studies were used to pool the overall low back pain prevalence and associated factors, respectively. The overall pooled annual prevalence of low back pain in Ethiopia was estimated to be 54.05% (95% CI: 48.14-59.96). Age, sex, body mass index, work experience, working hours, lack of safety training, awkward working posture, work shift, prolonged standing, lifting heavy objects, sleeping disturbance, history of back trauma, previous medical history of musculoskeletal disorder, and lack of adequate rest interval at work were significantly associated with low back pain.

CONCLUSION: The current systematic review and meta-analysis revealed a higher prevalence of lower back pain in Ethiopia. Most of the low back pain epidemiological studies conducted in Ethiopia focused on specific occupational settings, making pooling of data and comparison with other countries challenging. Thus, further general population studies are recommended.

PMID:34603457 | PMC:PMC8486508 | DOI:10.1155/2021/6633271

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