A study of the physiological and neuromuscular demands on female nurses working in geriatric wards in Hong Kong

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A study of the physiological and neuromuscular demands on female nurses working in geriatric wards in Hong Kong

 

Author: Hui, Ling
Title: A study of the physiological and neuromuscular demands on female nurses working in geriatric wards in Hong Kong
Year: 1999
Subject: Nurses -- China -- Hong Kong
Geriatric nursing -- China -- Hong Kong
Nursing assessment -- China -- Hong Kong
Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations
Department: Dept. of Rehabilitation Sciences
Pages: xii, 108 leaves : ill. (some col.) ; 30 cm
Language: English
InnoPac Record: http://library.polyu.edu.hk/record=b1477335
URI: http://theses.lib.polyu.edu.hk/handle/200/1660
Abstract: In order to study the physiological and neuromuscular exertion levels of front-line female hospital nurses working in geriatric wards in Hong Kong, twenty one nurses (study group, mean aged: 27.33+-4.99) and eighteen sedentary workers (control group, mean aged: 28.39+-3.22) were tested. The physiological and neuromuscular exertion levels of the two groups were assessed with continuous heart rate recording during a whole work shift and by comparing the fatigability of the back muscles before and after the work shift with surface electromyographic (EMG) measurement. The nurses recorded their activity profile at work for comparing with the heart rate data. A Borg's self-rating perceive exertion (RPE) questionnaire of nursing duties was filled in before the tests by the nurses. Results showed that there were significant difference in the physiological and neuromuscular demands between nurses and sedentary office workers in their daily work. The nurses demonstrated reasonably high heart rates (>90 beats per minute in 56% of the working hours) throughout their work shift, which reflects the physical demanding nature of their work. Solo patient transfer, showering and patient turning was found to be the most physically demanding duties in the heart rate recording and the RPE scale. The EMG data showed significant difference in the nurses' back muscles before and after work, which provided another index to confirm the accumulative neuromuscular exertion of their back muscles. Both the heart rate and EMG data were significantly different from the control group. It was suggested that the most demanding duties should be performed with extreme care by the nurses and it may be better to schedule these duties not at the end of a workday, in order to minimized injuries at work.

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