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Systematic evaluation of observational methods assessing biomechanical exposures at work

Takala, Esa-Pekka; Pehkonen, Irmeli; Forsman, Mikael; Hansson, Gert-Åke LU ; Mathiassen, Svend Erik; Neumann, W. Patrick; Sjogaard, Gisela; Veiersted, Kaj Bo; Westgaard, Rolf H. and Winkel, Jorgen (2010) In Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment and Health 36(1). p.3-24
Abstract
Objectives This systematic review aimed to identify published observational methods assessing biomechanical exposures in occupational settings and evaluate them with reference to the needs of different users. Methods We searched scientific databases and the internet for material from 1965 to September 2008. Methods were included if they were primarily based on the systematic observation of work, the observation target was the human body, and the method was clearly described in the literature. A systematic evaluation procedure was developed to assess concurrent and predictive validity, repeatability, and aspects related to utility. At least two evaluators independently carried out this evaluation. Results We identified 30 eligible... (More)
Objectives This systematic review aimed to identify published observational methods assessing biomechanical exposures in occupational settings and evaluate them with reference to the needs of different users. Methods We searched scientific databases and the internet for material from 1965 to September 2008. Methods were included if they were primarily based on the systematic observation of work, the observation target was the human body, and the method was clearly described in the literature. A systematic evaluation procedure was developed to assess concurrent and predictive validity, repeatability, and aspects related to utility. At least two evaluators independently carried out this evaluation. Results We identified 30 eligible observational methods. Of these, 19 had been compared with some other method(s), varying from expert evaluation to data obtained from video recordings or through the use of technical instruments. Generally, the observations showed moderate-to-good agreement with the corresponding assessments made from video recordings; agreement was the best for large-scale body postures and work actions. Postures of wrist and hand as well as trunk rotation seemed to be more difficult to observe correctly. Intra- and inter-observer repeatability were reported for 7 and 17 methods, respectively, and were judged mostly to be moderate or good. Conclusions With training, observers can reach consistent results on clearly visible body postures and work activities. Many observational tools exist, but none evaluated in this study appeared to be generally superior. When selecting a method, users should define their needs and assess how results will influence decision-making. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
workload, risk assessment, posture, review
in
Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment and Health
volume
36
issue
1
pages
3 - 24
publisher
Finnish Institute of Occupational Health
external identifiers
  • wos:000273439100002
  • scopus:77949899304
ISSN
0355-3140
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
39c7fe76-78bf-46d7-a813-d3bcbb1faeae (old id 1547748)
alternative location
http://www.sjweh.fi/show_abstract.php?abstract_id=2876
date added to LUP
2010-02-23 13:12:04
date last changed
2018-07-15 03:07:08
@article{39c7fe76-78bf-46d7-a813-d3bcbb1faeae,
  abstract     = {Objectives This systematic review aimed to identify published observational methods assessing biomechanical exposures in occupational settings and evaluate them with reference to the needs of different users. Methods We searched scientific databases and the internet for material from 1965 to September 2008. Methods were included if they were primarily based on the systematic observation of work, the observation target was the human body, and the method was clearly described in the literature. A systematic evaluation procedure was developed to assess concurrent and predictive validity, repeatability, and aspects related to utility. At least two evaluators independently carried out this evaluation. Results We identified 30 eligible observational methods. Of these, 19 had been compared with some other method(s), varying from expert evaluation to data obtained from video recordings or through the use of technical instruments. Generally, the observations showed moderate-to-good agreement with the corresponding assessments made from video recordings; agreement was the best for large-scale body postures and work actions. Postures of wrist and hand as well as trunk rotation seemed to be more difficult to observe correctly. Intra- and inter-observer repeatability were reported for 7 and 17 methods, respectively, and were judged mostly to be moderate or good. Conclusions With training, observers can reach consistent results on clearly visible body postures and work activities. Many observational tools exist, but none evaluated in this study appeared to be generally superior. When selecting a method, users should define their needs and assess how results will influence decision-making.},
  author       = {Takala, Esa-Pekka and Pehkonen, Irmeli and Forsman, Mikael and Hansson, Gert-Åke and Mathiassen, Svend Erik and Neumann, W. Patrick and Sjogaard, Gisela and Veiersted, Kaj Bo and Westgaard, Rolf H. and Winkel, Jorgen},
  issn         = {0355-3140},
  keyword      = {workload,risk assessment,posture,review},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {1},
  pages        = {3--24},
  publisher    = {Finnish Institute of Occupational Health},
  series       = {Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment and Health},
  title        = {Systematic evaluation of observational methods assessing biomechanical exposures at work},
  volume       = {36},
  year         = {2010},
}