Artisanal fisherwomen/shellfish gatherers: analyzing the impact of upper limb functioning and disability on health-related quality of life

<div><p>Abstract The aim is to analyze upper limb functioning and disability, and its association with health-related quality of life among artisanal fisherwomen from Bahia, Brazil. Cross-sectional epidemiological study was conducted with a sample of 209 fisherwomen. Structured questionnaires were used for socio-demographic and comorbidity information, as well as the instruments Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder and Hand (DASH) and Short-Form Healthy Survey (SF-36) respectively, to evaluate the upper limbs and health-related quality of life. The results demonstrated that the presence of musculoskeletal disorders in the upper limbs directly affects the values of the DASH instrument and the SF-36v01 questionnaire scores, while also generating a negative correlation between the DASH and SF-36v01. The varying functioning abilities, pain and social aspects negatively affect upper limb function, and the daily activities and work of fisherwomen. The presence of chronic disease and the absence of intervention and rehabilitation for these professionals, that could produces, in a long-term, cases of disability.</p></div>