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  1. Crockett, Seth MD, MPH
  2. Dellon, Evan S. MD, MPH
  3. Biggers, Larissa MA
  4. Ernst, Donna A. DNP, MSN, NEA-BC, CNL, CGRN


Work-related musculoskeletal disorders occur frequently among the endoscopy staff, and patient-handling duties involved with colonoscopy-applying manual pressure and repositioning patients-are particularly physically demanding. This study explored whether the use of a lower abdominal compression device (ColoWrap), previously shown to reduce the need for manual pressure and patient repositioning, would diminish the frequency of staff-reported musculoskeletal pain. A randomized, blinded, sham-controlled clinical trial was performed at the University of North Carolina Hospitals. Three hundred fifty patients had either ColoWrap or a sham device applied before colonoscopy. The primary outcome was the frequency of staff-reported musculoskeletal pain after assisting with colonoscopy. In the intention-to-treat analysis, which included procedures in which ColoWrap was removed, there was no statistical difference in the frequency of staff-reported pain in the control versus ColoWrap arm (4.6% vs. 3.4% of procedures, p = .59). However, when ColoWrap was used as directed (e.g., remained in place for the duration of the procedure), the frequency of staff-reported musculoskeletal pain was significantly reduced (4.6% vs. 0.7% of procedures, p = 0.04). Use of ColoWrap as directed was also found to be independently associated with reduced odds of staff-reported pain relative to the sham arm (OR = 0.12; 95% CI [0.02, 0.95]). When used as directed, ColoWrap reduced the frequency of musculoskeletal pain experienced related to assisting with colonoscopy and may reduce the risk of musculoskeletal disorders and injuries among the endoscopy staff.