Sedentary Work Exerting up to 10 pounds (4.5 kg) of force occasionally and/or a negligible amount of force frequently or constantly to lift, carry, push, pull, or otherwise move objects, including the human body. Sedentary work involves sitting most of the time, but may involve walking or standing for brief periods of time. Jobs are sedentary if walking and standing are required only occasionally and other sedentary criteria are met.

Light Work Exerting up to 20 pounds (9.1 kg) of force occasionally and/or up to 10 pounds (4.5 kg) of force frequently, and/or negligible amount of force constantly to move objects. Physical demand requirements are in excess of those for Sedentary Work. Light Work usually requires walking or standing to a significant degree. However, if the use of the arm and/or leg controls requires exertion of forces greater than that for Sedentary Work and the worker sits most the time, the job is rated Light Work.

Medium Work Exerting up to 50 (22.7 kg) pounds of force occasionally, and/or up to 25 pounds (11.3 kg) of force frequently, and/or up to 10 pounds (4.5 kg) of forces constantly to move objects.

Heavy Work Exerting up to 100 pounds (45.4 kg) of force occasionally, and/or up to 50 pounds (22.7 kg) of force frequently, and/or in excess of 20 pounds (9.1 kg) of force constantly to move objects.

Very Heavy Work Exerting in excess of 100 pounds (45.4 kg) of force occasionally, and/or in excess of 50 pounds (22.7 kg) of force frequently, and/or in excess of 20 pounds (9.1 kg) of force constantly to move objects.

Job Classification

In most duration tables, five job classifications are displayed. These job classifications are based on the amount of physical effort required to perform the work. The classifications correspond to the Strength Factor classifications described in the United States Department of Labor's Dictionary of Occupational Titles. The following definitions are quoted directly from that publication.

Sedentary Work Exerting up to 10 pounds (4.5 kg) of force occasionally and/or a negligible amount of force frequently or constantly to lift, carry, push, pull, or otherwise move objects, including the human body. Sedentary work involves sitting most of the time, but may involve walking or standing for brief periods of time. Jobs are sedentary if walking and standing are required only occasionally and other sedentary criteria are met.

Light Work Exerting up to 20 pounds (9.1 kg) of force occasionally and/or up to 10 pounds (4.5 kg) of force frequently, and/or negligible amount of force constantly to move objects. Physical demand requirements are in excess of those for Sedentary Work. Light Work usually requires walking or standing to a significant degree. However, if the use of the arm and/or leg controls requires exertion of forces greater than that for Sedentary Work and the worker sits most the time, the job is rated Light Work.

Medium Work Exerting up to 50 (22.7 kg) pounds of force occasionally, and/or up to 25 pounds (11.3 kg) of force frequently, and/or up to 10 pounds (4.5 kg) of forces constantly to move objects.

Heavy Work Exerting up to 100 pounds (45.4 kg) of force occasionally, and/or up to 50 pounds (22.7 kg) of force frequently, and/or in excess of 20 pounds (9.1 kg) of force constantly to move objects.

Very Heavy Work Exerting in excess of 100 pounds (45.4 kg) of force occasionally, and/or in excess of 50 pounds (22.7 kg) of force frequently, and/or in excess of 20 pounds (9.1 kg) of force constantly to move objects.

Sprains and Strains, Lumbar Spine


Related Terms

  • Low Back Injury
  • Low Back Pain
  • Lumbar Strain
  • Lumbosacral Soft Tissue Injury

Differential Diagnosis

Specialists

  • Cardiologist, Cardiovascular Physician
  • Chiropractor
  • Occupational Medicine Specialist
  • Orthopedic (Orthopaedic) Surgeon
  • Physiatrist (Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Specialist)
  • Physical Therapist
  • Sports Medicine Physician

Factors Influencing Duration

Duration is influenced by the severity of the initial pain and by the pain induced impairment in function, the individual's response to treatment, medical and psychiatric co-morbidity, current substance use disorders, use of opioid analgesics, and his or her job requirements and usual leisure activities.

Medical Codes

ICD-9-CM:
721.3 - Lumbosacral Spondylosis without Myelopathy; Arthritis; Osteoarthritis; Spondylarthritis
722.32 - Schmorls Nodes, Lumbar Region
722.93 - Disc Disorder, Other and Unspecified, Lumbar Region
724.2 - Lumbago; Low Back Pain; Low Back Syndrome; Lumbalgia
846.0 - Sprains and Strains of Sacroiliac Region, Lumbosacral Joint
846.1 - Sprains and Strains of Sacroiliac Region, Sacroiliac Ligament
846.2 - Sprains and Strains of Sacroiliac Region, Sacrospinatus (Ligament)
846.3 - Sprains and Strains of Sacroiliac Region, Sacrotuberous (Ligament)
846.8 - Sprains and Strains of Sacroiliac Region, Other Specified Sites
846.9 - Sprains and Strains of Sacroiliac Region, Unspecified Site
847.2 - Sprains and Strains of Other and Unspecified Parts of Back, Lumbar Spine
847.3 - Sprains and Strains of Other and Unspecified Parts of Back, Sacrum; Sacrococcygeal (Ligament)
847.4 - Sprains and Strains of Other and Unspecified Parts of Back, Coccyx
847.9 - Sprains and Strains of Other and Unspecified Parts of Back, Unspecified Site; Back NOS

Treatment

There is no difference in the treatment recommended for those diagnosed as having low back “strain/sprain” and those diagnosed with acute low back pain. These are basically the same condition but are provided different labels for the pain.

For initial treatment non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication or acetaminophen, manipulation (especially for those who are positive on the Clinical Prediction Rule), aerobic exercise, stretching in the direction that decreases the pain, continuing to do the activities that are normal for that person, and reassurance that most episodes of back pain resolve over time are the recommended treatments in evidence based guidelines from multiple countries.

In the largest prospective studies, there is no difference in speed of recovery or chances of failure to recover (transition to chronic low back pain) based on the type of non-operative treatment or the specialty of the treatment provider(Carey 1995; Carey 1999). Thus the goal of treatment is to make the individual more comfortable while the episode of low back pain resolves.

There is emerging evidence that opioid (narcotic) use early after “strain/sprain” or early after acute back pain onset predicts longer disability durations and worse outcomes (Webster; Franklin; Volinn).

For those in whom the low back pain (or “strain/sprain”) has become chronic, the best treatment is active exercise by itself, or with cognitive and behavioral therapy in what is called multidisciplinary rehabilitation.

Source: Medical Disability Advisor



ACOEM

ACOEM's Practice Guidelines, the gold standard in effective medical treatment of occupational injuries and illnesses, are provided in this section to complement the disability duration guidelines.*
 
Low Back Disorders
 
* The relationship between the MDGuidelines (MDA) content and ACOEM's guidelines is approximate and does not always link identical diagnoses. The user should consult the diagnostic codes in both guidelines, as well as the clinical descriptions, before assuming an equivalence.

Source: ACOEM Practice Guidelines






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