Relationship of musculoskeletal pain with physical and functional variables and with postural changes in school children from 6 to 12 years of age

Daniela S. L. Pereira Shamyr S. Castro Dernival Bertoncello Renata Damião Isabel A. P. Walsh About the authors


Painful disorders can affect children and adolescents, causing distress and significant demand for health services.


To identify the prevalence of musculoskeletal pain and its relation to age, sex, body mass index (BMI), how to carry school supplies, postures used in ADLs, outside school physical exercises and postural changes in students.


Cross-sectional exploratory study with a convenience sample consisted of 262 schoolchildren aged 6 to 12 years (137 female). Data collection was conducted by questionnaire containing personal data, presence and location of pain, means of transportation and illustrative figures for choosing the way of carrying school supplies and postures ADL's. Postural evaluation was performed by observational analysis and body mass index calculated from information on height, weight, age and sex. Descriptive analysis was carried out with numbers and percentages. For inferential statistics, comparison of average age according to the presence of pain was performed by Kruskal-Wallis with Dunn's post-test. Categorical variables were compared with chi-square test.


The presence of musculoskeletal pain was reported by 51.1% of the students and 38.93% had pain in only one region. The most affected regions were legs, spine, arms and shoulders. The pain increased with age and with physical activity.


In the our sample, 51.1% of students reported pain and 38.93% reported pain in only one region. There was no association between the presence of pain and sex, BMI, how to carry school supplies, postures used in ADLs and postural changes. The increasing age and physical exercise influenced significantly the presence of pain.

physical therapy; child; pain; movement; posture

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