Background: Work-related musculoskeletal disorders (MSD) are common in dentistry due to the prolonged static work involved during patient care, making dental health care personnel vulnerable to musculoskeletal complaints. We aimed to pool the prevalence estimates of MSD among various dental healthcare providers, including dentists, dental students, dental hygienists, and auxiliaries. Methods: A systematic search of five databases was performed (Scopus, Embase, CINAHL, Web of Science, Dentistry & Oral Sciences Source). The studies that reported the prevalence of MSD among dental healthcare workers and those written in English were selected. Screening and data extraction were performed by two review authors independently. Discrepencies were resolved by another review author. Risk of bias assessment was done using a nine-item questionnaire developed by Hoy et al. Pooled estimates were calculated using meta-analysis of proportions (random effects model). Results: Among the 3090 publications screened, 234 publications were included for full-text screening. Meta-analysis was performed for 89 estimates from 88 publications. Females showed significantly higher prevalence [OR = 1.42 (95% CI = 1.09-1.84); I 2 = 66.02; N = 32]. The analysis yielded a pooled estimate of 78.4% (95% CI = 74.8-82). The meta-regression showed similar prevalence over the years (Coefficient: 0.001; P-value: 0.762). Conclusions: A high prevalence of MSD was noted among dental healthcare providers, with about seven out of ten having experienced MSD in the past. This emphasizes the need for awareness and adoption of appropriate ergonomic postures by dental healthcare providers from early in their careers to minimize work-related MSD.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1062
Publication statusPublished - 2022

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Biochemistry,Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Immunology and Microbiology
  • Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)


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