QUESTION: A 65-year-old obese male heavy-equipment operator, who drives bulldozers at a landfill, was seen for neck pain. Imaging studies revealed cervical facet arthropathy. Does whole-body vibration (WBV) cause or aggravate cervical disc degeneration?
ANSWER: Causation analysis must be based on facts and scientific evidence. The AMA Guides to the Evaluation of Disease and Injury Causation provides guidance on causation analysis and apportionment. The second edition, published in 2014, provides the following guidance in Chapter 32, Effects of Whole-Body Vibration on the Spine:
To create formidable proof to link WBV with a specific spinal disorder will require more research. The symptom of LBP is ubiquitous and can emanate from multiple diseases and disorders.
This chapter from the AMA Guides to the Evaluation of Disease and Injury Causation focused on WBV and the low back rather than the...