Workplace MSD Injuries


Lead Author(s): 

Andrew N. Pollak, MD

Supporting Author(s): 

Sylvia I. Watkins-Castillo, PhD

The type of workplace injury is a major factor in defining the median number of associated days away from work. Fractures have historically, and remain, the injury associated with the highest number of days away from work. In the late 1990s, a median of 20 to 21 days away from work were reported for a fracture; since the early 2000s, the median days away has been about 30. Carpal tunnel syndrome is a close second in terms of days away from work, but the median has fluctuated between 21 and 32 days over the years 1997 to 2010, with no discernible trend pattern. Amputations and tendonitis are the remaining two injury types that are associated with a median of more than 10 days away from work.

Workers between the ages of 35 and 54 years sustain the largest number of nonfatal occupational injuries that involve days away from work, possibly reflecting the ages found in the workforce. Days away from work by type of injury reflected the distribution of workers by age, with the exception of carpal tunnel syndrome, where a larger proportion of days away from work was reported for workers between ages 45 and 54 years. (Reference Table 6B.2.1 PDF CSV and Table 6B.2.2 PDF CSV
Median Days Away from Work [1] for Nonfatal Injuries by Nature of Injury, United States 2010


  • 2014

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