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3 types of repetitive strain injuries

On Behalf of | Jun 7, 2024 | Workers' Compensation |

Workplace injuries come in many forms, some devastating and instantly debilitating, while others manifest gradually over time. Repetitive strain injuries (RSIs), also known as repetitive motion injuries, mostly affect workers who engage in repetitive tasks for long periods such as data entry, assembly line work, typing, and manual labor involving repetitive motions.

Since RSIs manifest gradually over time, they may not be detected until it is too late and significant damage has already occurred, leading to chronic pain, decreased productivity and potential long-term disability if not addressed promptly. RSIs may include the following:

1. Carpal tunnel syndrome

This is one of the most well-known types of RSI, typically caused by compression of the median nerve as it goes through the carpal tunnel in the wrist. Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) often results from repetitive motions such as typing on a keyboard using poor ergonomics, or using vibrating tools, leading to inflammation and swelling within the narrow confines of the carpal tunnel.  Carpal tunnel syndrome can also happen from direct trauma to the wrist.

2. Tendonitis

Frequent repetitive motions in the workplace can result in tendonitis, a condition marked by inflammation or irritation of the tendons. These fibrous tissues link muscles to bones and are prone to strain when subjected to repetitive stress. The onset of tendonitis typically manifests as pain, stiffness and tenderness in the affected area, potentially leading to chronic discomfort if not addressed promptly.

3. De Quervain’s tenosynovitis

De Quervain’s tenosynovitis is a condition affecting the tendons on the wrist’s thumb side. Repetitive thumb movements, such as gripping, twisting or pinching, can cause irritation and swelling of the tendons and their protective sheath, resulting in pain and difficulty with grasping or pinching motions. This condition is often seen in individuals who perform repetitive tasks involving fine motor skills, such as using a computer mouse or texting on a smartphone.

If you suffered an RSI at work, you may be able to seek benefits for wage loss and coverage for related medical expenses through workers’ compensation.  Obtain the guidance of a certified specialist workers’ compensation attorney in Pennsylvania – contact us today for a consultation.