A comparison of self-perceived physical and psycho-social worker profiles of people with direct work injury, chronic low back pain, and cumulative trauma

Joseph Chung Keung Cheng, Wai Ping Cecilia Tsang

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


This study investigated the psycho-social factors among injured workers and the influence of their psycho-social profile on the readiness of return to work. Sixty-four subjects with injuries on the upper limbs or lower limbs, low back pain, or cumulative trauma disorder were recruited. The workers' profiles (self-perceived physical health, mental health, and work readiness) together with the impact and types of work injury on the workers' perceived wellness were measured. The regression model of work readiness was constructed to develop a theoretical background for predicting work readiness based on different factors. The results showed that injured workers with chronic injury such as low back pain or cumulative trauma had poorer self-perception of physical health and psycho-social/mental health compared to those with direct trauma. The regression analysis further affirmed that self-perceived pain and physical functioning were significant factors influencing the readiness for returning to work. Workers with low back pain were found to have lower motivation for returning to work. Other factors such as the non-verbal intelligence of the injured workers, their anxiety level, and the support they received from family members were found to have some indirect impact on their ability to return to work, but this was not statistically proven.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)315-323
Number of pages9
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2005


  • Cumulative trauma
  • Direct work injury
  • Low back pain
  • Work rehabilitation
  • Worker profile

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Rehabilitation

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