I'm thinking about going to nursing school. I heard that many nurses have to quit nursing because of back pain. Is this true?

Studies of back pain and occupational health have been done. One from the Institute of Occupational Health in Finland just looked at nursing students.

They followed 174 nursing students from the start of their nursing program through the first five years of their nursing career. They found a high number of nurses with back pain right from the start (before going to school).

The number of nursing students with back pain went up dramatically in the first year of school. About 30 percent of the nursing students reported back pain before starting school. At the end of nursing school this had jumped up to 72 percent. There was a slow but steady climb after that from 72 to 82 percent after five years as a nurse.

Back pain before starting nursing school is a risk factor for back pain and disability later.