2017 Volume 242 Issue 3 Pages 193-201
The Great East Japan Earthquake (GEJE) and Tsunami devastated the northeastern coast of Japan on March 11, 2011. This study attempted to determine whether socio-psychological factors such as sleep disturbance and psychological distress influenced new-onset subjective shoulder pain in survivors, during the post disaster phase of the GEJE. From November 2012 to February 2013 (2 years after the GEJE) and November 2014 to January 2015 (4 years after the GEJE), survivors (18 years old or over) answered self-reported questionnaires. In total, 1,454 survivors responded to the questionnaires and were thus included in this study. New-onset subjective shoulder pain was defined as shoulder pain by encircled response absent at 2 years, and present at 4 years after the GEJE. Two years after the GEJE, ≥ 10/24 points on the Kessler Psychological Distress Scale-6, and ≥ 6/24 points on the Athens Insomnia Scale defined the presence of psychological distress and sleep disturbance, respectively. Multiple logistic regression analysis was used to estimate the odds ratio (OR) and 95% confidence interval (CI) of the association between new-onset subjective shoulder pain, and psychological distress or sleep disturbance. Amongst participants, 7.2% (105/1,454) reported new-onset subjective shoulder pain. Sleep disturbance was significantly associated with new-onset subjective shoulder pain (OR = 1.92, 95% CI = 1.24-2.98, P = 0.004); however, psychological distress was not (OR = 0.78, 95% CI = 0.42-1.42, P = 0.41). In conclusion, this is the first study indicating an association between sleep disturbance and new-onset subjective shoulder pain amongst the survivors of the GEJE.