University of California
Fadi A. Fathallah, PhD

Fadi A. Fathallah, PhD

Dept. of Biological and Agricultural Engineering
University of California
Davis, CA 95616
530-752-1612 Fax: 530-752-2640
Creative Achievements

  • Investigated the effects of stooped work on the spine in both field and laboratory settings.
  • Documented physical and visual mismatches between agricultural tractor driving and adolescents’ characteristics and capabilities and their implications to adolescents’ safety.
  • Showed the importance of investigating the simultaneous occurrence of risk factors related to occupational low back disorders.
  • Investigated forces in the body experienced by truck drivers when exiting commercial vehicles and the potential for slipping and falling after exiting.

 Current Research Interests

  • Occupational Biomechanics with special emphasis on Agricultural environments
  • Industrial Ergonomics as it relates to low back disorders and cumulative trauma disorders
  • Electromyography
  • Human Factors

Key Publications

  • Reiter, D. A., Fathallah, F. A., Farouki, R. T., & Walton, J. H. (2012). Noninvasive high resolution mechanical strain maps of the spine intervertebral disc using nonrigid registration of magnetic resonance images. J. Biomechanics, 45(8), 1534-1539.
  • Ulrey, B. L., and Fathallah, F. A. (2012). Effect of a personal weight transfer device on muscle activities and joint flexions in the stooped posture. J Electromyogr Kinesiol. Available online, Sept 25, 2012:
  • Habib, R.R., Fathallah, F.A., and Messing, K. (2010).  Full-time homemakers: Workers who cannot "go home and relax".  J Occup Safety & Ergonomics, 16(1), 113-18
  • Fathallah, F.A. (2010). Musculoskeletal disorders in labor-intensive agriculture. Applied Ergonomics, 41(6), 738-43.
  • Fathallah, F.A., Chang, J.H., Pickett, W., and Marlenga, B.L. (2009). Ability of Youth Operators to Reach Farm Tractor Controls. Ergonomics, 52(6):685-94
  • Fathallah, F.A., Miller, B.J., and Miles, J.A. (2008). The problem of stooped work in agriculture: Scope, potential interventions, and research needs. J. Ag Safety and Health.
  • Faucett, J., Meyers, J., Miles, J., Janowitz, I., and Fathallah, F.A. (2007). Rest break interventions in stoop labor tasks. Applied Ergonomics, 38(1), 219-226.
  • Meyers, J.M., Miles, J.A., Faucett, J., Fathallah, F.A., Janowitz, I., Smith, R., and Weber, E. (2006). Smaller loads reduce risk of back injuries during wine grape harvest.  California Agriculture, 60(1), 25-31
  • Kato, A., Fathallah, F.A., Miles, J.A., Meyers, J.M., Faucett, J., Janowitz, I., and Garcia, E. (2006). Ergonomic evaluation of California winegrape trellis systems.  J. Ag Safety and Health, 12(10), 17-28
  • McGorry, R.W., Hsiang, S.M., Fathallah, F.A., and Clancy, E.A. (2001).  Timing of activation of the erector spinae and hamstrings during a trunk flexion and extension task. Spine, 26, 418-425.
  • Dempsey, P.G., Burdorf, A., Fathallah, F.A., Sorock, G.S., and Hashemi, L. (2001). Influence of measurement accuracy on the application of the 1991 NIOSH equation.  Applied Ergonomics, 32, 91-99.
  • Marras, W.S., Allread, W.G., Burr, D.L, and Fathallah, F.A. (2000).  Validation of a low-back disorder risk model: A prospective study of ergonomic interventions associated with manual materials handling jobs.  Ergonomics 43(11), 1866-1886.
  • Fathallah, F.A. and Cotnam, J.P. (2000). Maximum forces sustained during various methods of exiting commercial tractors, trailers and trucks.  Applied Ergonomics, 31, 25-33.
  • Fathallah, F.A., and Brogmus, E.G. (1999).  Hourly trends in workers’ compensation claims.  Ergonomics 42(1), 196-207.
  • Fathallah, F.A., Marras, W.S., and Parnianpour, M. (1998).  The role of complex simultaneous trunk motions in the risk of occupation-related low back disorders.  Spine 23(9), 1035-1042.
  • Burdorf, A., Rosegnol, M., Fathallah, F., Snook, S., and Harrick, R. (1997).  Challenges in assessing risk factors in epidemiological studies on back disorders.  Am J Ind Medicine, 32(2), 142-152.


  • Biomechanics and Ergonomics (UCD)
  • Occupational Musculoskeletal Disorders (UCD)

Public and University Service

  • Associate Editor, J Agricultural Safety and Health
  • Program Chair, Biological Systems Engineering Graduate Program, UCD
  • Member, Biomedical Engineering Graduate Group, UCD
  • UC Education Abroad Program: Middle East Faculty Advisory Committee, and Public Health Faculty Advisory Committee