Cutting force measurement Hand tool instrumentation used in slaughterhouses – a systematic review

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Salvador Francisco Tirloni
Adriana Seára Tirloni
Nestor Roqueiro
Eugenio Andrés Díaz Merino
Giselle Schmidt Alves Díaz Merino
Antônio Renato Pereira Moro


Workers’ intensive use of hand tool cutting in the meat packing industry is a risk factor for occupational health, mainly by mechanical compression of tissues in the upper limbs, which can cause Work-Related Musculoskeletal Disorders (WMSDs). This systematic review aimed to identify the characteristics and measured variables of instrumented knives and determine how they should be designed. The review process and article extractions occurred through an analysis of the (article) titles, keywords and abstracts, followed by reading the full texts by two reviewers independently. Searches were conducted in Medline, Web of Science, Science Direct, Scopus, Ebsco and Engineering Village for articles published in peer-reviewed journals from January 2000 to March 2019, in the English language. The result of (the) search included 1289 potentially eligible studies, with 894 duplicated/triplicated/quadruplicated articles that were excluded, resulting in 404 remaining articles of which 33 were considered eligible, with 36 additional articles, totaling 69 evaluated full texts. After the review, none of the 14 analyzed studies, were rated as having good methodological quality. In addition, four types of instrumented knives were used. Data acquisition was performed in both laboratory and meat processing plants. It is noteworthy that only one knife was submitted to a validation process and that the articles did not provide complete technical information about the knives. The result demonstrated that the cutting force varies within and between subjects, tasks, plants and blade finishings. All knives used some type of electrical connection via cable or wires. Of the articles found, none considered the influences that the workers are subject to when they do not use the same tool daily for data acquisition. Therefore, the development of different types of instrumented knives, with wireless data transmission and more rigorous studies are necessary to expand the knowledge of the cutting force and development of WMSD in slaughterhouse workers who perform meat cutting.

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Tirloni, S. F., Tirloni, A. S. ., Roqueiro, . N., Díaz Merino, E. A., Schmidt Alves Díaz Merino, . G., & Moro, . A. R. P. (2021). Cutting force measurement : Hand tool instrumentation used in slaughterhouses – a systematic review. EXCLI Journal, 20, 727-747.
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