Overview

This trial is active, not recruiting.

Condition pain
Treatment alternative keyboard
Sponsor University of Pittsburgh
Collaborator National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH/CDC)
Start date January 2009
End date April 2011
Trial size 84 participants
Trial identifier NCT00801983, 08030467, R01OH008961

Summary

Awkward postures during computer keyboard use have been hypothesized to be one cause of musculoskeletal pain/discomfort as well as musculoskeletal disorders of the upper extremity (MSD-UE). Alternative computer keyboards purport to reduce musculoskeletal pain/discomfort and have been shown to change aspects of keyboard users' kinematics under laboratory conditions. However, research that has examined the effectiveness of alternative keyboards in reducing musculoskeletal pain/discomfort in the workplace is equivocal, and no study has examined the association between postures and musculoskeletal pain. The Aims of this 3-year prospective double cross-over trial are: 1) To examine the effectiveness of an alternative keyboard in reducing reports of pain over 6-months; 2) To examine the neutrality and stability of postures during keyboard use; and 3) To identify which postures are associated with lower levels of musculoskeletal pain. Seventy-five computer users will be randomly assigned to one of two keyboard use orders: Group 1 - AB (standard keyboard, alternative keyboard); Group 2 - BA (alternative keyboard, standard keyboard). All subjects will use their assigned keyboards for 6-months before switching to the next keyboard. Every week, subjects will report their musculoskeletal pain levels. Just prior to and just after each 6-month intervention subjects' kinematics performances on the keyboards will be recorded at the worksite using the Keyboard - Personal Computing Style (K-PeCS) instrument and in a laboratory setting using 3-dimensional motion capture technology.

Aim 1: To examine the effectiveness of an alternative keyboard in reducing pain over 6-months.

Hypothesis 1 (H-1) - At six months subjects using an alternative keyboard will have significantly lower musculoskeletal pain levels than when using a standard keyboard.

Aim 2: To examine the neutrality and stability of postures during keyboard use.

Hypothesis 3 (H-2) - Subjects using an alternative keyboard will have significantly more neutral postures than when using a standard keyboard at baseline and at 6 months Hypothesis 3 (H-3) - Subjects 6-months keyboarding postures will remain equivalent to the keyboarding postures documented at baseline.

United States No locations recruiting
Other Countries No locations recruiting

Study Design

Allocation randomized
Endpoint classification safety/efficacy study
Intervention model crossover assignment
Masking open label
Primary purpose prevention
Arm
(Experimental)
Subject receives typical keyboard first and alternative keyboard second
alternative keyboard
Subjects use either a regular or alternative keyboard
(Experimental)
Subject receives alternative keyboard first and typical keyboard second
alternative keyboard
Subjects use either a regular or alternative keyboard

Primary Outcomes

Measure
Musculoskeletal discomfort
time frame: 6 months

Secondary Outcomes

Measure
Keyboard kinematics
time frame: 6 months

Eligibility Criteria

Male or female participants from 18 years up to 65 years old.

Inclusion Criteria: - Use a computer at least 20 hrs per week - Aged 18-65 - Experiencing some pain during computer use Exclusion Criteria: - Currently use an alternative keyboard - Serious trauma injury to the upper extremity - Rheumatic disorder

Additional Information

Official title The Effect of Alternative Keyboards on Discomfort and Typing Kinematics
Trial information was received from ClinicalTrials.gov and was last updated in January 2013.
Information provided to ClinicalTrials.gov by University of Pittsburgh.