To the Editor: We believe that the Commentary on back pain in the workplace by Dr Hadler and colleagues poorly serves clinicians, patients with low back pain, and occupational health and safety professionals seeking to reduce the burden of low back pain among working people.1 The authors argue that low back pain does not occur as a consequence of occupational physical demands (eg, lifting, twisting of the trunk, whole body vibration) but rather as a result of the “psychosocial context” of work and other phenomena. They claim that “extensive and compelling science” supports their opinions but cite only 2 published reviews and a few additional studies in support of their inference.
Garg A, Gerr F, Katz JN, Marras WS, Silverstein B. Low Back Pain and the Workplace. JAMA. 2007;298(4):403-404. doi:10.1001/jama.298.4.403