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What you should know about carpal tunnel syndrome

Carpal tunnel syndrome is a condition in the hand and arm that is caused when a nerve becomes pinched in the wrist. The condition can cause tingling and numbness, among other symptoms. It can also cause weakness in the hand, which can give those who suffer from the disease a tendency to drop things they are holding.

Although there are a number of different factors that can contribute to a person developing carpal tunnel syndrome, the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke have indicated that it is often associated with certain tasks commonly found in the workplace, such as making repetitive hand motions, vibrations from tools, using a strong grip, and mechanical stress that is placed on the palm.

While there is still some debate as to whether there is a potential link between carpal tunnel syndrome and computer or keyboard use, there are other instances where an individual's work duties may contribute to them developing this disease. As an example, assembly workers who constantly handle objects on conveyor belts or use air-powered tools may find that these actions contribute to the development of carpal tunnel syndrome.

Since this disease occurs over a period of time, it can sometimes be difficult to claim that it is a workplace injury. Informing your employer as soon as you believe there is a problem and seeing a doctor for an evaluation can help to establish whether the disease has developed due to factors in the workplace. You may also find it beneficial to learn more about your legal rights to determine if you may be eligible for workers compensation.

Source: FindLaw, "Ow! Tips for Reducing or Preventing Wrist Injuries," Mark Wilson, May. 28, 2015

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