Influence of living environments and working status on low back pain for survivors of the Great East Japan Earthquake

Yoshihiro Hagiwara, Yutaka Yabe, Yumi Sugawara, Mari Sato, Takashi Watanabe, Kenji Kanazawa, Kazuaki Sonofuchi, Masashi Koide, Takuya Sekiguchi, Masahiro Tsuchiya, Ichiro Tsuji, Eiji Itoi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

14 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background The Great East Japan Earthquake and devastating Tsunami caused irreparable damage on the northeastern coast of Japan. This study aimed to examine the influencing factors of “Living environment” and “Working status” on low back pain for the survivors of the earthquake evaluated by a self-report questionnaire. Methods Between 2011 and 2013, survivors replied to the self-report questionnaire, and 986 people consented to join this study. The living environment was divided into 3 categories (1. Living in the same house as before the earthquake, 2. Living in a safe shelter or temporary small house, 3. Living in a house of relatives or apartment house) and working status was divided into 5 categories (1. Unemployed before the earthquake, 2. Unemployed after the earthquake, 3. Decrease in income, 4. Different occupation after the earthquake, 5. The same occupation as before the earthquake). Age, gender, living areas, past history of arthritis, arthropathy, osteoporosis, sleep disturbance, psychological distress, and economic status were considered as confounding factors. Generalized estimating regression models with logit link function were used because outcome variables are repeatedly measured and binomial. We evaluated the correlation between the presence/severity of low back pain over time and housing status/working status at 1 year after the earthquake. Results There were no significant differences between age, gender, living areas, working status, or living environment before or after the earthquake. There was no significant difference in the risk of having low back pain in living environment or gender. There was significant difference in the risk of having low back pain in those with “Decrease in income” (OR = 1.93, 95% CI = 1.23–3.03) and “The same occupation as before the earthquake” (OR = 1.67, 95% CI = 1.1–2.52). Conclusions Though living environment has little effect, “Decrease in income” and “The same occupation as before the earthquake” have strong influences on low back pain.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)138-142
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Orthopaedic Science
Volume21
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Mar 1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

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