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Title: The epidemiology of musculoskeletal pain in an elderly population within a selected elderly care facility in KwaZulu-Natal
Authors: Pendock, Luke Fitzroy 
Issue Date: 2018
Aim: The aim of this study was to determine the epidemiology of the elderly presenting with musculoskeletal pain, within a selected elderly care facility in KwaZulu-Natal.
Subjects: Elderly participants, aged 60 years and older, residing in the selected elderly care facility in KwaZulu-Natal.
Methodology: Once the Institutional Research Ethics Committee (IREC) approved the study, and TAFTA had granted permission for the study to be conducted, the researcher administered the questionnaires to the participants who met the inclusion criteria, on the same day that they had read and completed the letter of information and informed consent. The researcher, and the research assistant, remained present to read the questions to any participants unable to read, or who were no longer able to read, and answer any queries or concerns the participants may have had throughout the process. A total of 302 completed informed consent forms and questionnaires were collected, and placed in separate sealed ballot boxes to ensure that questionnaires could not be linked to the participants. This served to maintain confidentiality and anonymity in the study. All completed questionnaires were analysed by only the researcher and the statistician. The number issued to the participant’s questionnaire was used on the data sheet to maintain confidentiality.
Results: In total, 302 questionnaires were utilised for statistical analysis. The results showed a significantly high point (79.1%) and lifetime (86.1%) prevalence of musculoskeletal pain in the elderly participants. The most common areas of pain reported by the participants were the lower back (41.1%), the knee (33.1%) and the shoulder (20.1%). The statistically significant risk factors for musculoskeletal pain in the elderly were difficulty sleeping and the amount of hours slept per night (p=0.018); anxiety; stress and depression (p=0.026); concomitant medical conditions (p=0.012); medication used, and past musculoskeletal pain experienced (p<0.001).

Conclusion: This study is consistent with previous studies conducted on the prevalence of musculoskeletal pain in the elderly. Musculoskeletal pain has a negative impact on the activities of daily living in the elderly, making it a public health concern. Focus needs to be placed on satisfactory and effective healthcare, with patient education and rehabilitation to enhance the quality of life and the ability to function independently in the elderly population.
Submitted in partial compliance with the requirements for the Master’s Degree in Technology: Chiropractic, Durban University of Technology, Durban, South Africa, 2018.
Appears in Collections:Theses and dissertations (Health Sciences)

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