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Psychosocial factors in the prevention of work-related musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs)

09/08/2022 Type: Info sheets 4 pages

Work-related musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) tend to be associated with physical risk factors, such as heavy loads or repetitive movements; however, psychosocial factors can play a significant role. They not only contribute to the risk of developing or exacerbating MSDs but can also act as a barrier to returning to work.


This info sheet identifies psychosocial factors linked to MSDs, such as excessive workload and poor social support, and explains the effect these stressors have on our physiology. It shows that the key to minimising their effects is a holistic, participatory approach to workplace risk assessment that considers both physical and psychosocial factors together.