Many individuals have heard of carpal tunnel syndrome or tendonitis yet may still be unaware of the broader repetitive strain injuries (RSIs) category that encompass these conditions. If there’s one detail that you should know about RSIs, it’s this: Patients don’t often experience sudden onsets of their condition.
The damage that performing repeated work-related tasks does to their muscles, nerves and tendons will build up over time, ultimately resulting in more pronounced symptoms. Some workers are more apt to develop RSIs than others.
Which workers most afflicted by repetitive stress injuries?
Those employed as cashiers, dental hygienists, bus drivers, athletes, musicians, manufacturing workers, baristas and cooks are just some of the many employees that engage in repetitive movements throughout the day that leave them liable to developing an RSI.
The two groups of workers with the highest RSI diagnosis rates are construction workers or clerical ones.
Construction workers often find themselves having to maintain an awkward posture or using or grasping at tools, all of which can lead to permanent nerve, muscle and tendon damage over time. Clerical workers’ consistent use of computers can cause unnecessary trauma to a worker’s hands and wrists, resulting in irreparable damage to supporting muscles and nerves, causing someone tremendous discomfort.
What are some repetitive stress injury symptoms?
Some of the earliest symptoms that someone suffering from an RSI may experience are weakness, pain, stiffness, swelling, tenderness, numbness or throbbing sensations. These symptoms may emerge along with someone’s hands, neck, forearms, wrists, elbows or shoulders.
How do doctors treat repetitive stress injuries?
Many individuals who suffer from RSIs initially try to calm their symptoms by employing the rest, ice, compression and elevation (RICE) approach. A doctor may also ask their patient to give their afflicted body part some rest or wrap it up with bandages. Some doctors may prescribe anti-inflammatory drugs or recommend physical therapy or surgery, depending on the severity of a patient’s condition.
You may want to consult with an attorney with extensive workers’ comp experience here in Wilmington if you’re suffering a repetitive stress injury. Your lawyer can let you know whether Delaware workers’ compensation laws may require your employer to pay your medical bills and lost wages in your case.