TitleEffect of whole-body vibration exposures on physiological stresses: Mining heavy equipment applications
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2020
AuthorsKia, K, Fitch, SM, Newsom, SA, Kim, JH
JournalApplied Ergonomics
Volume85
Pagination103065
Date Published01/2020
ISSN00036870
Abstract
 

Highlights

  • The effect of whole-body vibration (WBV) on physiologic stress was quantified by validated blood-borne biomarkers.
  • A 4-h acute exposure to WBV did not induce skeletal muscle damage, inflammation or physiologic stress measurable in the blood.
  • These findings indicate known complications of WBV exposure likely arise secondary to chronic, repeated exposures.

The aim of this study was to employ validated biological markers to quantify the physiologic consequences of exposure to whole-body vibration (WBV) and evaluate the relative impact of mining vehicle operator vibration exposure on physiological responses as compared to vertical-axial dominant WBV. In a laboratory-based study with a repeated-measures design, we played actual field-measured floor vibration profiles into a 6-degree-of-freedom motion platform to create different realistic WBV exposures: 1) vertical-dominant vibration collected from long-haul trucks, 2) multi-axial vibration collected from mining heavy equipment vehicles, and 3) no vibration (control condition). Circulating biomarkers of interest were cortisol and catecholamines (epinephrine and norepinephrine) to assess physiological stress, interleukin-6 (IL-6) and tumor necrosis factor-α (TNFα) to test for inflammation, thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBARS) to measure oxidative stress, and myoglobin and plasma creatine kinase to assess muscle damage. We collected blood samples at pre-exposure (0 h), during-exposure (2 and 4 h), and 2 h into recovery after the WBV exposure (6 h) in all four exposure conditions. The results showed that a single, 4-h acute exposure to WBV may not be sufficient to induce skeletal muscle damage, inflammation or physiologic stress measurable in the blood. No significant differences were observed between conditions for any of the biomarkers that could be attributed to the exposure contrast between vertical-dominant and multi-axial WBV exposures. These findings further indicate known complications of WBV exposure likely arise secondary to chronic, repeated exposures that give rise to subclinical stresses that were not captured here.

DOI10.1016/j.apergo.2020.103065
Short TitleApplied Ergonomics