The Effect of Alternative Keyboards on Discomfort and Typing Kinematics

This study is ongoing, but not recruiting participants.
Sponsor:
Collaborator:
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Nancy Baker, University of Pittsburgh
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier:
NCT00801983
First received: December 3, 2008
Last updated: January 15, 2013
Last verified: January 2013
  Purpose

Awkward postures during computer keyboard use have been hypothesized to be one cause of musculoskeletal pain/discomfort as well as musculoskeletal disorders of the upper extremity (MSD-UE). Alternative computer keyboards purport to reduce musculoskeletal pain/discomfort and have been shown to change aspects of keyboard users' kinematics under laboratory conditions. However, research that has examined the effectiveness of alternative keyboards in reducing musculoskeletal pain/discomfort in the workplace is equivocal, and no study has examined the association between postures and musculoskeletal pain. The Aims of this 3-year prospective double cross-over trial are: 1) To examine the effectiveness of an alternative keyboard in reducing reports of pain over 6-months; 2) To examine the neutrality and stability of postures during keyboard use; and 3) To identify which postures are associated with lower levels of musculoskeletal pain. Seventy-five computer users will be randomly assigned to one of two keyboard use orders: Group 1 - AB (standard keyboard, alternative keyboard); Group 2 - BA (alternative keyboard, standard keyboard). All subjects will use their assigned keyboards for 6-months before switching to the next keyboard. Every week, subjects will report their musculoskeletal pain levels. Just prior to and just after each 6-month intervention subjects' kinematics performances on the keyboards will be recorded at the worksite using the Keyboard - Personal Computing Style (K-PeCS) instrument and in a laboratory setting using 3-dimensional motion capture technology.

Aim 1: To examine the effectiveness of an alternative keyboard in reducing pain over 6-months.

Hypothesis 1 (H-1) - At six months subjects using an alternative keyboard will have significantly lower musculoskeletal pain levels than when using a standard keyboard.

Aim 2: To examine the neutrality and stability of postures during keyboard use.

Hypothesis 3 (H-2) - Subjects using an alternative keyboard will have significantly more neutral postures than when using a standard keyboard at baseline and at 6 months Hypothesis 3 (H-3) - Subjects 6-months keyboarding postures will remain equivalent to the keyboarding postures documented at baseline.


Condition Intervention
Pain
Device: Alternative Keyboard

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Allocation: Randomized
Endpoint Classification: Safety/Efficacy Study
Intervention Model: Crossover Assignment
Masking: Open Label
Primary Purpose: Prevention
Official Title: The Effect of Alternative Keyboards on Discomfort and Typing Kinematics

Further study details as provided by University of Pittsburgh:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • Musculoskeletal discomfort [ Time Frame: 6 months ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]

Secondary Outcome Measures:
  • Keyboard kinematics [ Time Frame: 6 months ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]

Enrollment: 84
Study Start Date: January 2009
Estimated Study Completion Date: August 2013
Primary Completion Date: April 2011 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Arms Assigned Interventions
Experimental: A
Subject receives typical keyboard first and alternative keyboard second
Device: Alternative Keyboard
Subjects use either a regular or alternative keyboard
Experimental: B
Subject receives alternative keyboard first and typical keyboard second
Device: Alternative Keyboard
Subjects use either a regular or alternative keyboard

  Eligibility

Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years to 65 Years
Genders Eligible for Study:   Both
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   Yes
Criteria

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Use a computer at least 20 hrs per week
  • Aged 18-65
  • Experiencing some pain during computer use

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Currently use an alternative keyboard
  • Serious trauma injury to the upper extremity
  • Rheumatic disorder
  Contacts and Locations
Please refer to this study by its ClinicalTrials.gov identifier: NCT00801983

Locations
United States, Pennsylvania
University of Pittsburgh
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States, 15260
Sponsors and Collaborators
University of Pittsburgh
  More Information

No publications provided

Responsible Party: Nancy Baker, Associate Professor, University of Pittsburgh
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT00801983     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: 08030467, R01OH008961
Study First Received: December 3, 2008
Last Updated: January 15, 2013
Health Authority: United States: Institutional Review Board

ClinicalTrials.gov processed this record on April 15, 2014