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Repetitive Motion Injuries Have a Huge Impact on Our Nation’s Workforce

Repetitve Motion InjuryWorkplace injuries are commonly associated with a single, isolated traumatic event causing harm to an employee. Although these incidents do occur, there is a category of injuries responsible for more damages than any other, including slip and falls. Repetitive motion injuries, also known as repetitive stress injuries (RSI), wreak havoc on our nation’s workforce. Other names for these injuries include repetitive motion disorder (RMD), cumulative trauma disorder (CTD), and occupational overuse syndrome. These disorders leave employees unable to perform daily tasks, including fulfilling their job requirements, resulting in many without employment.

Common RSIs

RSI refers to a wide variety of injuries and can affect almost any part of the human body. Common conditions resulting from RSIs include:

  • Carpal tunnel syndrome;
  • Bursitis; and
  • Tendonitis.
Who is at Risk?

These types of injuries stem from repetitive tasks, forceful exertions, vibrations, mechanical compressions, and strained or awkward positions. RSIs cases have increased, a statistic attributed to the increased use of computers in the workplace. Before computers, most RSI’s stemmed from athletic injuries, such as playing tennis (Tennis Elbow). RSIs still make-up more than half of all athletic injuries but have become a nuisance to the workplace, as well. Office workers using computer equipment are at high risk for developing RSI; however, they are not alone. Any job or hobby involving repetitive motions are at risk, including:

  • Welders;
  • Cake decorators;
  • Seamstresses;
  • Carpenters;
  • Drivers;
  • Cashiers;
  • Postal workers;
  • Hairdressers;
  • Tattoo artists; and
  • Musicians.
Preventative Measures

If the repetitive motion is work-related, you may find it difficult to prevent the injury from occurring, that is, without seeking other employment. If you suspect you may develop an RSI, it is beneficial to stop or reduce the intensity of the activity causing the damage. Other tips to reduce the risk of long-term injury include:

  • Take periodic breaks;
  • Stand up;
  • Stretch;
  • Rest eye muscles;
  • Eat healthily;
  • Increase exercise;
  • Sleep at least eight hours; and
  • Practice self-care, such as getting a massage or going to the chiropractor.
Your Employer’s Responsibility

Your employer owes you a duty of care to keep you safe and injury-free while in the workplace. If you suspect development of an RSI, discuss your concerns with your employer. Preventative measures can stop the onset of these debilitating injuries. If you suffer from a work-related repetitive use injury, a Santa Clara County workplace injury attorney can help. These injuries can affect your ability to perform daily tasks for the rest of your life; if they occurred due to negligence, the liable party is financially responsible. The attorneys at Corsiglia McMahon & Allard, L.L.P. will research your claim and aggressively pursue the maximum compensation owed. Call us today at (408) 289-1417 for a free case review to explore possible options.

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