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Incidence of Tinnitus, Impaired Hearing and Musculoskeletal Disorders among Students Enrolled in Academic Music Education - a Retrospective Cohort Study

 
 

Copyright 2017, Mark Alan Wade

Primary Author: Hagberg, M.
Journal Title: International Archive of Occupational and Envionmental Health
Date Published: Aug-05
Language: English
Category: Multiple Medical Disorders
Key Words: medical hearing muscular skeletal students musician performance educator
Full Citation: Hagberg, M., G. Thiringer, and L. Brandström. Incidence of Tinnitus, Impaired Hearing and Musculoskeletal Disorders among Students Enrolled in Academic Music Education-a Retrospective Cohort Study. International Archive of Occupational and Environmental Health 78, no. 7 (August 2005): 575-83.
Full Abstract: The aim was to determine the incidence of tinnitus, impaired hearing and musculoskeletal disorders among musicians and the relation to the number of practicing hours and/or the instrument type before the onset of symptoms. METHOD: The study base consisted of students enrolled in the School of Music and Music Education at Göteborg University between the years 1980 and 1995. There were 407 of the 602 original students that answered a questionnaire (response rate of 68%). The questionnaire concerned exposure before and after the enrollment in the Music Academy, as well as onset of symptoms. RESULTS: The highest incidence of symptoms was found for reported tinnitus with a rate of 10.6 per 1000 years of instrumental practice. There was a relationship between exposure to the number of hours of instrumental practice and incidence of impaired hearing. Among the musculoskeletal symptoms the highest incidences per 1000 years of instrumental practice were pain in the neck and in the left shoulder with a rate of 4.4 and 4.6 disorders per 1000 years of instrumental practice, respectively. There was 2.4 times higher incidence for musculoskeletal disorders in the right hand/wrist and a 2.2 times higher incidence in the left elbow/forearm for musicians who practiced for 20 h or more per week before the onset of disorders compared to those who practiced fewer than 20 h per week when controlling for age and gender. Musicians with a violin or a viola as the main instrument had four times the incidence for right elbow/forearm disorder and twice the incidence of neck pain, pain in the right shoulder and the left elbow/forearm compared to those who had piano as the main instrument.