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Construction work may lead to carpal tunnel syndrome

On Behalf of | May 14, 2021 | Workers' Compensation

Those who work in construction might want to learn more about the fact that carpal tunnel syndrome, or CTS, is common among employees in the industry. Many of these workers experience stress on their wrists and hands as a result of their work. An issue of the Journal of Occupational Rehabilitation mentioned that this problem affects 3 out of every 10,000 full-time workers in construction.

What is carpal tunnel syndrome?

The median nerve travels the length of the front of the forearm through the carpal tunnel. This is the powerhouse for the muscles of the thumb, fingers and wrist. Compression of this nerve may cause paint, tingling and numbness.

Some of the reasons for CTS in construction

Many construction workers utilize vibrating tools, such as jackhammers. Repeated hand movements, such as in hammering, may also cause CTS. Maintaining positions for a while with the wrist bent backward or forwards can also be a risk for CTS.

Treatment

In its early stages, CTS might cause pain just at night. The syndrome might eventually interfere with a worker doing their job and lead to a claim for workers’ compensation.

A doctor may recommend splints to hold the hand in a neutral position that relieves pressure on the median nerve. A prescription for medication to relieve swelling may be necessary.

Surgery is also an option if other means do not work. If surgery is performed, you may be able to return to the job after recovering for six weeks.

Some means of prevention

The U.S. Department of Labor has recommended ergonomics, which includes the use of tools that minimize the hands, frequent breaks, padded gloves and much more. Mixing tasks is also recommended.

If you have a workers’ compensation claim question, it may be best to consult an attorney with experience in this type of issue. A legal professional may be able to help you secure needed benefits.