Common injuries to the muscles and musculoskeletal system, such as back or neck pain, are seen in a surgeon's professional career. Studies on ergonomics in seated otolaryngologic procedures are not well-documented. The height of the operating tables and surgical chairs are key elements in an ergonomic environment. To prevent musculoskeletal injuries, and to reduce occupational risk, surgeons can benefit from the right support and positioning.
This study evaluated the operating table and surgical chair heights and determined whether adjustments could be made to accommodate different surgeon physiques.
The dimensions of operating tables and surgical seats were measured in local hospitals. This information was then supplemented by an internet search for other models.
Five operating tables and five surgical stools were found in the local hospital. The results of a Google search revealed that there were five. The greatest range of available tables was 63.5-124.5cm, which is higher than the maximum recommended working height of 76.2cm. The adjustable surgical stool that had the greatest range was available from 50.8 to 72.4 cm in height. Combining operative table with surgical stool gave the most range in heights.
The combination of a surgical table measuring 63.5-125.7 cm in length and a surgical stool measuring 50.8-72.4cm in height provided the most versatility to accommodate different physician heights. This combination could reduce physical fatigue and provide a safer environment for seated surgeons.