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Reviews on Environmental Health

Editor-in-Chief: Carpenter, David O. / Sly, Peter

Editorial Board Member: Brugge, Doug / Diaz-Barriga, Fernando / Edwards, John W. / Field, R.William / Hales, Simon / Horowitz, Michal / Maibach, H.I. / Shaw, Susan / Stein, Renato / Tao, Shu / Tchounwou, Paul B.

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Volume 31, Issue 2 (Jun 2016)


Epidemiology of musculoskeletal injury in the California film and motion picture industry

Nicholas A. Kusnezov
  • Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center – Orthopedics Texas, TX, USA
/ Hamed Yazdanshenas
  • UCLA, Los Angeles, CA, USA
/ Eddie Garcia
  • New Jersey Medical School, NJ, USA
/ Arya N. Shamie
  • Corresponding author
  • Orthopaedic Spine Surgery, UCLA School of Medicine; Professor (Hon.), Zhejiang University, China; and Expert Reviewer, Medical Board of CA
  • Email:
Published Online: 2016-01-20 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/reveh-2015-0023


Introduction: Musculoskeletal injury exerts a significant burden on US industry. The purpose of this study was to investigate the frequency and characteristics of musculoskeletal injuries in the California (CA) film and motion picture (FMP) industry which may result in unforeseen morbidity and mortality.

Methods: We reviewed the workers’ compensation (WC) claims database of the Workers’ Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau of California (WCIRB) and employment statistics through the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). We analyzed the frequency, type, body part affected, and cause of musculoskeletal injuries.

Results: From 2003 to 2009, there were 3505 WC claims of which 94.4% were musculoskeletal. In the CA FMP industry, the most common injuries were strains (38.4%), sprains (12.2%), and fractures (11.7%). The most common sites of isolated injury were the knee (18.9%), lower back (15.0%), and ankle (8.6%). Isolated musculoskeletal spine injuries represented 19.3% of all injuries. The most common causes of injury were work-directed activity (36.0%) and falls (25.5%).

Conclusion: We present the first report on the unique profile of musculoskeletal injury claims in the FMP industry. This data provides direction for improvement of workplace safety.

Keywords: California; film and motion picture industry; musculoskeletal injury; workers’ compensation


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About the article

Corresponding author: Arya N. Shamie, Orthopaedic Spine Surgery, UCLA School of Medicine; Professor (Hon.), Zhejiang University, China; and Expert Reviewer, Medical Board of CA, E-mail:

Received: 2015-08-07

Accepted: 2015-11-16

Published Online: 2016-01-20

Published in Print: 2016-06-01

Citation Information: Reviews on Environmental Health, ISSN (Online) 2191-0308, ISSN (Print) 0048-7554, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/reveh-2015-0023. Export Citation

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