Medical Problems of Performing ArtistsMedical Problems of Performing Artists

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Musculoskeletal Pain in Trombonists: Results from the UNT Trombone Health Survey

Eric Wallace, Derek Klinge, Kris Chesky
From: Medical Problems of Performing Artists: Volume 31 Number 2: Page 87 (June 2016)

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Abstract: The trombone is a popular, versatile, and unique member of the brass family of musical instruments. Yet the musculoskeletal health concerns of trombonists are grossly understudied. The purpose of this study was to develop and apply a novel online research strategy for assessing musical and non-musical demographics along with prevalence, frequency, intensity, quality, timing, and location of site-specific trombone-related pain. Of the 316 trombonist respondents to this open survey, 76.6% (n=242) experienced trombone-related pain in one or more sites over the past year. Lip was the site with the highest prevalence rate for pain (23%). Selected pain sites were outlined in three primary clusters of musculoskeletal sites: 1) the lips and jaw region, 2) left upper extremity, and 3) back region. Over 35% (n=114) reported that trombone-related pain prevented playing their instrument. Site-specific characteristics of pain suggest that future epidemiologic studies seek to better understand location-specific intensity, frequency, quality, and timing of pain. Such details will assist educators, performers, and clinicians understand, prevent, and treat musculoskeletal problems associated with learning and performing musical instruments.
http://dx.doi.org/10.21091/mppa.2016.2016.

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