In its many forms, operating can lead surgeons to adopt postures that have damaging long-term effects on physical health through imparting musculoskeletal fatigue. One area that is particularly susceptible is the cervical spine, as surgeons are forced into positions that require sustained cervical hyperflexion. The repercussions of resultant injuries can be steep, as they have the potential to adversely affect one’s operative capacity. The purpose of this article is to assess the spinal health of today’s surgeons by evaluating available research in various surgical subspecialties. By focusing on the ergonomic principles that govern the surgical arena and identifying unifying themes between plastic surgery and other surgical subspecialties, it is the goal of this article to enhance the understanding of cervical spine health as it pertains to the plastic and reconstructive surgeon.
Seattle, Wash.; Chicago, Ill.; and Washington D.C.
From the Section of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, University of Washington Medicine; the Section of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, University of Chicago Medicine; and the Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, MedStar Georgetown University Hospital.
Received for publication November 7, 2017; accepted April 26, 2018.
Disclosure:None of the authors has any commercial associations or financial relationships that might create a conflict of interest with the work presented in this article.
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David H. Song, M.D., M.B.A., Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, MedStar Georgetown University Hospital, 3800 Reservoir Road NW, Washington, D.C. 20007