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June 10, 1998

Lumbar Supports for Prevention of Low Back Pain in the Workplace

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Md.

JAMA. 1998;279(22):1826-1828. doi:10.1001/jama.279.22.1826

Low back pain is a costly and often seriously disabling condition that affects industry in all countries. Low back injuries are a major industrial cause of disability in the United States, with 2% of the workforce incurring back injuries each year.1 Back injuries are the most expensive health care problem for the 30 to 50-year-old age group and are the leading cause of disability in the United States for persons younger than 45 years.2 Each year, 15% to 20% of the US population experiences back problems.2 The total cost to industry that results from low back pain was estimated to be between 26.8 billion and 56 billion dollars in 1988.3 Strategies to improve prevention of back injuries in the workplace are therefore an important public health issue.

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