Musculoskeletal complaints in physical therapy students: Prevalence and association with hypermobility. Academic Article uri icon


  • Aim: To evaluate the prevalence of musculoskeletal complaints, hypermobility and the association between them in Israeli physical therapy students. Study Design: Cross-sectional observational study. Setting: Department of Physical Therapy, Recanati School for Community Health Professions, Faculty of Health Sciences, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer Sheva, Israel. Participants: 105 physical therapy students participated in this study. Methods: Prevalence of musculoskeletal complaints was evaluated using the Modified Nordic Questionnaire. Hypermobility was assessed using the Beighton test. Results: The 12-month prevalence of musculoskeletal complaints was high: 49.0% for low back pain, 44.1% for knee pain and 44.6% for elbow pain. Hypermobility assessed by the "Beighton test" was found in 4% of males and 30.3% of females. No association was found between hypermobility and musculoskeletal complaints in physical therapy students. Smoking was positively associated with shoulder pain (p = 0.038). Conclusions: There is a high prevalence of musculoskeletal complaints among apparently healthy physical therapy students in Israel. Joint hypermobility is not associated with musculoskeletal complaints, probably because of the non-degenerative nature of musculoskeletal morbidity in this age group.

publication date

  • January 1, 2014