Class Preparation Guide

Class Preparation Guide

Evaluation of the Revised NIOSH Lifting Equation

1. The main purpose of this material (chapter, article, book, video, etc.) is… (State as accurately as possible the author’s purpose for this material. What was the author trying to accomplish?)

To establish whether or not the revised NIOSH lifting equation could be used to predict the probability of the development of lower back pain, by evaluating the correlation or lack thereof between the prevalence of LBP (Lower Back Pain), and exposure to lifting stressors as measured by the revised NIOSH lifting equation.
2. The key question addressed in this material is… (If not specifically addressed, figure out the key question or problem that was in the mind of the author when the material was developed. In other words, what key question or problem is addressed?)
• Is the revised National Institute for Occupational Health lifting equation, a valid yet practical tool for assessing or predicting low back pain due to manual lifting?
• Can the effectiveness of the equation in identifying jobs with higher rates of LBP be evaluated?

3. The context of this material is… (Identify the political, economic, social, historical, etc., background surrounding this material. This may include information on the existing knowledge on the subject and gaps in our existing knowledge.)

The NIOSH had just released a revised form of the lifting equation, and the researchers argued that there was a huge shortage of materials that evaluated the new guidelines provided, with only one retrospective study being found by the time this particular study was being carried out in 1999. The results of that retrospective study showed that the new equation could be used to predict the probability of membership in to the high-risk group. Establishing the effectiveness was definitely of importance due to the need to establish whether or not the revised equation could help in the identification of hazardous lifting tasks.

4. The main point(s) of view presented in this material is/are… (Identify the author’s view of the topic? Points of view can be theoretical, ideological, religious, methodological, etc., and usually play a large part in determining the main assumptions (next item addressed).

• There is a need for more studies to establish the reliability of the revised lifting equation when it comes to the identification of hazardous lifting tasks.
• There is a need to establish exactly what more the revised equation can do, beyond establishing risk for lower back pain. A good example being establishing the populations at risk, by correlating the development of lower back pain, with a lifting index of between 2 to 3.
• There is a need to utilize the lifting index more, when it comes to predicting the risk of lower back pains, more so for workers in manual lifting jobs

5. The main assumption(s) underlying the reasoning in this material is/are…. (Identify the generalizations the author does not think must be defended in the material. Assumptions are seldom specifically identified by authors. This is usually where the author’s reasoning begins.)
• The reader is conversant with the revised NIOSH lifting equation
• Lower back pain is commonly caused by manual lifting.
• All the respondents were being sincere in their responses, and that these responses were not simply given due to job dissatisfaction.
• The sample selected was a representative one
• The unexposed population rates were the rates only for those who have not been exposed to any known risks for developing lower back pains

6. The key concept(s) in this material is/are…. (Identify the most important ideas, theories, definitions, etc., used to support the author’s reasoning.)
Note: This section will likely be the longest in any set of notes as it is where all the key definitions, theories, models, etc., presented in the work should be summarized.

The key concepts are that the revised NIOSH lifting equation can be used in the prediction of the development of lower back pains, such that the equation can actually be employed in a work setting to determine how hazardous the lifting tasks associated with the particular job are. The research also attempts to argue that the lifting equation can be used for other tasks, other than to simply establish the risk for the development of lower back pains. The researchers argue that the equation should also be used to establish the percentage of the population that would likely be at risk of developing lower back pains associated with lifting. The lifting index is also identified as an important tool when it comes to identifying risk of LBP, with jobs with a lifting index of less than 1 carrying limited risk, and the risk gradually increasing as the index goes beyond 1.

7. The alternative(s) considered in this material is/are… (Identify the alternative answers to the key question or alternative solutions to the problem at issue the author included in the reasoning.)
• The alternative use of the lifting index as a predictor of risk of LBP related to manual lifting is a noteworthy suggestion.
• The alternative use of the revised NIOSH lifting equation to establish the percentage of the population at risk.

8. The most important information in this material is… (Identify the key information the author used to support his arguments/analysis. Identify the facts, data, evidence, experiences, etc., the author uses to reach their findings.)

The findings show that indeed the revised NIOSH lifting equation, more so the lifting index component can be effectively used to determine the degree of risk associated with any lifting task, with the findings showing that indeed any tasks below 1 could be carried out with minimal risk of developing LBP, the highest risk was found to bee in tasks with a lifting index of between 2 and 3 in which the risk of developing LBP was twice as high as in those with an LI of below 1.

9. The main inferences and/or interpretations of this material are… (Identify the most important findings and conclusions the author presents in the material).

• The lifting index component of the revised lifting equation is the most important tool when it comes to predicting the risk of developing LBP due to manual lifting.
• The index can also be used to identify populations at risk depending on the lifting indexes of the manual lifting tasks they carry out in the course of their work, thus enabling a calculation of the percentage of the population at risk.

10. Answer both of the following:

a. If this line of reasoning is taken seriously, the implications and consequences are… (Identify the implications and consequences if the author’s findings and conclusions are taken seriously. Identify those both the author states and those not stated.)
• If this line of reasoning is taken seriously, any task with a lifting index of above 1 will require special training to carry out. In some situations, such as in cases where the LI is above 3 there may be need for strict regulations against the use of manual lifting.
• If taken seriously, establishing work related (manual lifting), lower back pains will be much easier, as by simply calculating the lifting index of a particular task, one will be able to establish the probability of the injury having been caused by manual lifting.

b. If this line of reasoning is not taken seriously, the implications and consequences are… (Identify the implications and consequences likely to follow if people ignore the author’s findings and conclusions.)

If not taken seriously, the rates of LBP may continue to rise, as establishing a hazard associated with any task is very important, and manual lifting is no different.

Summary: In one paragraph review the material to identify significant topics included in order to later refer back to the work at a later time if needed for an assignment.
The significant topics included in the material, are the features of the NIOSH lifting equation, the potential risks associated with manual lifting, such as lower back pains, as well as the importance of the lifting index when it comes to establishing populations at risk.

Reference
Walters, T., Baron, S., Piacitelli, L., Anderson, V., Skov, T., Haring-Sweeney, M., Wall, D., & Fine, L. (1999). Evaluation of the Revised NIOSH Lifting Equation. Spine 24(4), 386-395.

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