Ergonomics in Spine Surgery

Joshua M. Kolz*, Scott C. Wagner, Alexander R. Vaccaro, Arjun S. Sebastian

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


As physician burnout and wellness become increasingly recognized as vital themes for the medical community to address, the topic of chronic work-related conditions in surgeons must be further evaluated. While improving ergonomics and occupational health have been long emphasized in the executive and business worlds, particularly in relation to company morale and productivity, information within the surgical community remains relatively scarce. Chronic peripheral nerve compression syndromes, hand osteoarthritis, cervicalgia and back pain, as well as other repetitive musculoskeletal ailments affect many spinal surgeons. The use of ergonomic training programs, an operating microscope or exoscope, powered instruments for pedicle screw placement, pneumatic Kerrison punches and ultrasonic osteotomes, as well as utilizing multiple surgeons or microbreaks for larger cases comprise several methods by which spinal surgeons can potentially improve workspace health. As such, it is worthwhile exploring these areas to potentially improve operating room ergonomics and overall surgeon longevity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)333-340
Number of pages8
JournalClinical Spine Surgery
Issue number8
StatePublished - 1 Oct 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • musculoskeletal disorder
  • neurosurgery
  • orthopedic surgery
  • work-related injury
  • workman's compensation


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