Hand-arm vibration syndrome among taxi motorcyclists in Bangkok

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Marut Tamnakpo
Sarunya Hengpraprom


Background : Hand-arm vibration syndrome (HAVs) resulting from prolonged expose to hand-transmitted vibration can cause an effect on musculoskeletal system, vascular system, and nervous system of the upper extremities. As taxi motorcyclists are exposed the excessive hand-transmitted vibration throughout their working time, therefore the study of hand-arm vibration syndrome in this occupation is noteworthy.

Objective : To determine the prevalence and associated factors of hand-arm vibration syndrome among taxi-motorcyclists in Bangkok.

Methods This cross-sectional descriptive study was conducted among 401 taxi motorcyclists who were randomly selected. The data were collected using the self-administered questionnaire. The response rate was 100%.
Backward stepwise logistic regression were applied to analyze the data.

Results Majority of the subjects were male with the mean age of 40.1  11.0 years old and the mean weight of 67.9  11.0 kilograms. The number of passengers per day were 48 persons [IQR = 30.0, 50.0], lengths of working on this occupation were 6 years [IQR = 3.0, 12.0], and nearly 69% of the them had been wearing while working. The results also show that almost 50% of the subjects illustrated the HAVs. The apparentsymptoms were problems regarding the muscle of the upper extremities or joints (26.4%) and tingling sensation of the fingers lasting more than
20 minutes (24.2%). The significant factors found to be associated with the HAVs were roughed-road surface (ORadj = 3.42, 95% CI =1.28 - 9.12), wearing gloves (ORadj = 1.85, 95% CI = 1.16 - 2.95), automatic motorcycle (ORadj = 1.60, 95% CI = 1.00 - 2.54), age (ORadj = 1.02, 95% CI = 1.00 - 1.05), and number of the passengers per day (ORadj = 1.01, 95% CI = 1.00 - 1.02).

Conclusion Accordingly, approximately 50% of taxi motorcyclists in Bangkok apparently exposed to HAVs. To reduce the risk of HAVs among this occupation, public health agencies or any related organizations should
consider to issue the mitigation measures or prevention guidelines for HAVs.

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