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Risk factors for the onset of non-specific neck pain: a systematic review

PainSci » bibliography » McLean et al 2010
updated
Tags: etiology, neck, pro, head/neck, spine

Two pages on PainSci cite McLean 2010: 1. The Complete Guide to Neck Pain & Cricks2. Being female and other ways to get neck pain

PainSci commentary on McLean 2010: ?This page is one of thousands in the PainScience.com bibliography. It is not a general article: it is focused on a single scientific paper, and it may provide only just enough context for the summary to make sense. Links to other papers and more general information are provided wherever possible.

This paper is quite similar to Paksaichol et al, especially in that they focused on prospective studies, but it is two years older and not as picky. The complete list of risk factors with “strong” evidence according to McLean et al is “older age, female gender, high job demands, low social or work support, being an ex-smoker, a history of low back disorders and a history of neck disorders”; they specifically called out the lack of evidence regarding “many clinical, physical, psychological and socio-demographic variables.”

~ Paul Ingraham

original abstract Abstracts here may not perfectly match originals, for a variety of technical and practical reasons. Some abstacts are truncated for my purposes here, if they are particularly long-winded and unhelpful. I occasionally add clarifying notes. And I make some minor corrections.

OBJECTIVE: Neck pain is a common musculoskeletal disorder, but little is known about which individuals develop neck pain. This systematic review investigated factors that constitute a risk for the onset of non-specific neck pain.

DESIGN AND SETTING: A range of electronic databases and reference sections of relevant articles were searched to identify appropriate articles. Studies investigating risk factors for the onset of non-specific neck pain in asymptomatic populations were included. All studies were prospective with at least 1 year follow-up.

MAIN RESULTS: 14 independent cohort studies met the inclusion criteria for the review. Thirteen studies were assessed as high quality. Female gender, older age, high job demands, low social/work support, being an ex-smoker, a history of low back disorders and a history of neck disorders were linked to the development of non-specific neck pain.

CONCLUSIONS: Various clinical and sociodemographic risk factors were identified that have implications for occupational health and health policy. However, there was a lack of good-quality research investigating the predictive nature of many other variables.

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