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April/May 2014 (vol. 10/6)

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Research Plus

Work tasks may risk hand osteoarthritis

There is limited evidence from epidemiological studies that work activities requiring repeated or sustained pinch grip is associated with osteoarthritis (OA) in the finger joints; however, there is inconsistent evidence to support an association for OA with either hand grip or exposure to  hand–arm vibration. The systematic review and meta-analysis included 19 studies, 17 of which were cross-sectional designs. For pinch grip, there was an elevated risk of OA in the proximal interphalangeal joint (odds ratio (OR) = 1.68; CI 1.22–2.31) and first carpometacarpal join (OR = 2.04; CI 1.40–2.97), but there were no significant effects on the distal interphalangeal, metacarpophalangeal or wrist joints. The two positive findings remained significant after excluding studies that did not control for age.

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Occupational Health at Work April/May 2014 (vol. 10/6) pp19