The Burden of Work Injuries in Sonography with a Focus on Diagnostic Cardiac Sonographers' Lived Experiences

Date of Award

Fall 2023

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Healthcare Administration (DHA)

Committee Chair

Karen Lankisch

Committee Member

Leslie Matthew

Committee Member

Bora Pajo


The study explores work-related musculoskeletal disorders in sonographers, focusing on the cardiac sonographers' lived experiences. The research shows that sonographers experience a high incidence of pain in their daily work, which affects their work and emotional well-being. This research aims to identify gaps in the existing literature concerning the lived experiences of cardiac sonographers, how they cope with the acquired pain and injuries, and how much of an impact WRMSD has on sonographer's everyday life. Sonographers are diagnostic medical professionals who perform tests to visualize the body's organs using ultrasound. Cardiac sonographers are specialized in visualizing and providing information about the patient's heart. WRMSD are injuries caused or aggravated by repetitive motions in the workplace. The study used a detailed descriptive approach to address the research question. A convenience sample of nine sonographers who experienced WRMSD participated in open-ended interviews and provided in-depth feedback on their lived experiences with WRMSD. The interviews were transcribed verbatim, coded, and analyzed. Atlas.ti Desktop Windows version was used for coding and analysis of data. Six major themes, two sub-themes along with six additional components of the sub-themes were found. Sonographers revealed the most important causes that trigger pain and also methods of coping with pain and injuries at work and in everyday life. The research based on the insightful description received from sonographers led to four important recommendations that would improve work conditions and decrease WRMSD.