A 3-D BIOMECHANICAL MODEL TO CALCULATE LOAD AT THE LUMBOSACRAL JOINT FOR MANUAL LIFTING TASKS

  • Dagmar Kobal-Engelaender
  • Youlian Hong
  • Günter Wichardt
Keywords: ergonomics, occupational biomechanics, lumbar spine, load, modeling

Abstract

INTRODUCTION: Low back disorders(LBD) represent a major proportion of health problems, resulting in high costs for employers and placing high demands on health services. One source for LBD is manual lifting and load manipulation in work place situations. With an obligation to occupational safety and health (by national and European law) ergonomists are required to provide guidelines for practioners, which include weight limits for lifting tasks. The present guidelines in use have been developed on a basis of qualitative evaluation and statistical classification of collected data. Amounts of intervertebral disc compression are calculated by 2-D models (Siemens-Burandt in Istanbuli, S., Mainzer, J. (1986); NIOSH in Waters, T.R. et al.(1993); Bundesanstalt für Arbeitsschutz und Arbeitsmedizin in Steinberg,U., Windberg,H.-J. (1997)). The purpose of this study is to develop a 3-D model, that allows for a quantitative evaluation of load at the lumbosacral joint while in the work place. The model is designed to be easily applicable for the practitioner, without the need of data collection that has the potential to affect the process of production.