Nurses Have Your Back, But Who Has Their Backs?


Nurse welcome life, they encourage the mother as she delivers her first child. They accompany people and their loved ones as life ends. Nurses care for people at their most vulnerable moments. Nurses improve the lives of their patients, often while sacrificing their own personal lives, and bodies – especially their backs.

Did you know that according to the Bureau of Labor, nursing is number six on the list of occupations most prone to strains and sprains and most prone to back injury? Nurses spend their long days standing on their feet and frequently lifting people.

A total of 20 percent of nurses ask to be transferred to a different unit or position and eight percent of nurses actually leave their job due to back problems, according to the American Nurses Association.

Common ways to injure your back

If you hurt your back, you might find yourself suddenly in pain, and this pain can last for six weeks, three months, or develop into a chronic problem. The Mayo Clinic identifies six major ways that you can injure your back:

  • You can strain a muscle or ligament, often by repeated heavy lifting. If you are not in good physical condition this can be especially painful.
  • You might rupture ruptured a disk; this is particularly painful and puts you out of commission immediately and for a period of time. It’s when a disk in your spine bulges or ruptures and presses on a nerve.
  • You might develop arthritis, as painful as this is, it can develop into other worse conditions.
  • You can worsen skeletal irregularities such as a curved back (scoliosis).
  • You might develop osteoporosis and if your bones become brittle this can lead to compression fractures.
  • If you are older than 30 or 40 years old, smoke, don’t exercise regularly and don’t lift correctly, you will be more likely to injure your back.

A back injury is painful and can cause nurses to become the patient. While nurses are a high-risk group, anyone can develop back pain on the job.

If you or your loved one has injured their back due to their occupation, you probably have questions about the way forward with your medical bills and situation at work. It might be a good idea to contact a workers compensation attorney to see if you can file a workers compensation claim to safeguard your rights while you recover from your back injury before you become a patient for life.

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