Did you know that nurses face a heightened workplace safety risk? Back injuries are one of the primary areas of concerns. A study cited by the National Library of Medicine found that “the lifetime prevalence of low back pain in nurses is higher than in the general population.”Why do so many nurses suffer back injury? Here, our Virginia workers’ comp attorney answers the question by providing an overview of the most common causes of back injuries for nursing staff.
An Overview of the Most Common Causes of Workplace Back Injuries for Nurses in Virginia
Nurses in Virginia are often required to engage in heavy lifting. A nurse may need to lift heavy medical equipment, lift other medical supplies, or assist patients in moving. These are tasks that require a lot of strength and, unfortunately, can result in serious back strain and related injuries. When a nurse lifts something heavy, the muscles in the back are under significant pressure. If the lifting technique is wrong—or if the object is simply too heavy—it can lead to back injuries.
Fall accidents are a leading cause of workplace injuries across industries. Health care is no exception. The hospital environment can sometimes be hectic and cluttered, leading to fall accidents. Wet floors, uneven surfaces, or obstacles in walkways are common hazards. When a nurse falls, the impact can injure the back. Such falls can cause sprains, fractures, or more severe spinal injuries.
Bending Twisting (Acute Injury)
Nurses often perform tasks that require bending over patients or twisting to reach supplies. These movements, especially when done suddenly or with force, can cause acute back injuries. Sudden bending or twisting can lead to a muscle pull or a spinal disc problem, causing immediate pain and discomfort. Acute injuries always require immediate medical treatment. Nurses in Virginia deserve the proper care when they have medical needs.
Not all workplace injuries happen in a single accident/incident. Some back injuries occur gradually over time. Nursing tasks frequently involve repetitive motions. Some examples include bending to check on patients or turning to grab medical tools. Repeating these movements over time can wear down the muscles and joints in the back. It is wear and tear that can lead to chronic back pain or even more severe conditions like herniated discs.
Nurses sometimes have tasks that require sitting for long periods, like documenting patient information or monitoring equipment. Sitting for extended periods can put pressure on the lower back and lead to discomfort. It’s important for nurses to take breaks, move around, and use ergonomically designed chairs to prevent such injuries.
Contact Our Virginia Workers’ Comp Lawyer for Nurses Today
At Injured Workers’ Law Firm, we are here to get to work when you cannot. If you are a member of nursing staff who suffered a back injury while on the job, we are more than ready to help. Give a call at (804) 755-7755 or contact us online for a confidential, no obligation case review. With a legal office in Richmond, we advocate for nurses throughout the Commonwealth.