This is an interesting thread. I'm 52 and have been a nurse here in the US for 22 years. I'm certainly feeling the aches and pains of this physically demanding career. So far, luckily, no on the job injuries. As many of you have noted, we still do alot of lifting here. Changes are happening quickly, however. I feel fortunate to be in a newly constructed building that was built with lifting devices in mind and each room has a lift mounted to the ceiling that are wonderful. These have only come into broad use in the last 5 years or so, I would say. The reason I'm on this forum is because I'm hoping to do some work in Britain and will be very interested to learn about lifting techniques and issues there. So, to cheshirecat I say, "I feel your pain." I think much of the advice the others have offered is good. Like here in the US, I presume there are many different settings for nurses and it may be time to find something less demanding physically and it sounds like you are already doing that with your move to an outpatient area. Good luck with that and, as the others have advised put your personal safety and care at the top of your list and use it as your guide in what type of nursing you choose to do. Best..