The burden of neck pain among adults aged 70 years and older in Iran, 1990–2019

Seyed Aria Nejadghaderi, Seyed Ehsan Mousavi, Mark J.M. Sullman, Ali Asghar Kolahi, Alireza Namazi Shabestari, Saeid Safiri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Neck pain is a complex musculoskeletal disorder that can result in substantial morbidity. The present article presents the neck pain burden in Iranians who were at least 70 years old, from 1990 to 2019, by sex, age group, and province. Methods: Publicly available information on the prevalence, incidence, and years lived with disability (YLD) caused by neck pain was extracted from the Global Burden of Disease study 2019. The estimates were all provided as counts and age-standardized rates (per 100,000), and included 95% uncertainty intervals. Results: The point prevalence of neck pain in 2019 was 8710.6, while the incidence rate was 1334.7 per 100,000 population. That same year, there were number of 27.8 thousand YLDs and an YLD rate of 801.7 per 100,000. The prevalence, incidence, and YLD rates did not change substantially over the measurement period (1990–2019). The highest YLD rate was found in Tehran (960.9 per 100,000), while Kohgiluyeh and Boyer-Ahmad had the lowest (730.5 per 100,000). Females had slightly higher prevalent cases, incident cases, and YLDs, as well as their corresponding rates in 2019. In 2019, the number of prevalent cases, incident cases, and YLDs peaked in the 70–74 age group, for both sexes, and in all cases they reduced with age. In both 1990 and 2019, Iran had a higher YLD rate than that found among elderly adults in the Middle East and North Africa region. Conclusions: The burden of neck pain in Iran has decreased slightly over the last three decades, but it still imposes a substantial burden and is higher than that found in the rest of the region. Therefore, preventive programs should be initiated at a young age to reduce the attributable burden later in life.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere1477
JournalHealth Science Reports
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2023


  • elderly adults
  • epidemiology
  • global burden of disease
  • Iran
  • neck pain
  • years lived with disability


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