Work Ergonomic Hazards for Musculoskeletal Pain among University Office Workers


  • Sunisa CHAIKLIENG Back, Neck and Other Joint Pain Research Group, Faculty of Associated Medical Sciences, Khon Kaen University, Khon Kaen 40002
  • Pornnapa SUGGARAVETSIRI Faculty of Public Health, Khon Kaen University, Khon Kaen 40002
  • Yodchai BOONPRAKOB Back, Neck and Other Joint Pain Research Group, Faculty of Associated Medical Sciences, Khon Kaen University, Khon Kaen 40002


Musculoskeletal pain, office workers, ergonomic


This cross-sectional analytic study aimed to investigate ergonomic hazards in the workplace for musculoskeletal pain among university office workers. There were 142 full-time office staff from Khon Kaen University. Demographic characteristics and musculoskeletal pain were evaluated from a structured questionnaire. Ergonomic workstations, i.e. size of table, seat, work area and illuminations were measured at the workstations and anthropometric parameters were determined. Descriptive statistics were used for data analysis which were percentage, mean, and standard deviation. Inferential statistics were chi-square test and the student t-test at 95 % confidence interval. The results showed that 81.7 % of office workers were female, the mean age was 38.0 ± 10.0 years, the average work experience was 12.3 ± 10.8 years. One-month prevalence of musculoskeletal pain was 69.0 %. The onset of symptoms was during working hours and the majorly reported the cause as prolonged sitting in the same posture at work (73.3 %). From measurements, 55.8 % of all workstations had insufficient illumination being lower than the minimum standard requirement (400 lux). Most workstations (75.6 %) had significantly inappropriate height (above elbow height of workers) at p < 0.001. From questionnaires, the seat height was significantly associated with musculoskeletal pain (p = 0.034). Moreover, anthropometric characteristics of musculoskeletal pain cases (i.e. buttock-popliteal length, hip breadth, sitting elbow height) were significantly different from healthy office workers (p < 0.05). The findings suggest that ergonomic workstations need to be improved appropriately for individual workers and improvements in working conditions following standard requirements should be considered.


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How to Cite

CHAIKLIENG, S., SUGGARAVETSIRI, P., & BOONPRAKOB, Y. (2011). Work Ergonomic Hazards for Musculoskeletal Pain among University Office Workers. Walailak Journal of Science and Technology (WJST), 7(2), 169–176. Retrieved from



Research Article