"Alphabet soup" injuries are the fastest-growing types of injuries
causing workers' comp claims.
There's the CTS...carpal tunnel syndrome.
And there's CTD...cumulative trauma disorder.
But the Mother Hen of them all is RMI...repetitive motion injury.
Also called RSI...repetitive stress injury.
RMI...RSI...CTS. Whatever you call these injuries, they are
muscular or skeletal injuries to the hand, wrist, and other areas
that get the brunt of repetitive motion.
The largest number of RSIs happen to workers who spend much of their
workdays using computer keyboards, doing writing and data entry.
What can you do to reduce the chances of repetitive stress injuries
to your employees? Some suggestions:
Adjust or redesign your workstations, tables, and desks, or get new
ones that fit each worker's own comfort needs.
Encourage (even require) RSI-prone employees to take frequent, short
breaks from their repetitive work.
Encourage these workers to exercise...stand up, stretch arms,
exercise wrists, flex fingers, move their heads in circles.
Replace plain chairs with chairs that have lower-back supports,
adjustable seats and armrests.
Position computer keyboards low enough so the operator's hands are
almost perfectly straight and are resting on the keyboard.
Train all RSI-prone workers to stand, sit and perform their job
Your solutions do not have to be expensive.
Example: Here at ISBE, two of us developed hand and wrist problems
from working at computer keyboards on our desktop publishing set-up.
One of us developed a sore spot on the heel of the right hand. And
one of us developed tendinitis in the index finger of the right
hand. Both conditions resulted from constant use of the mouse.
The solution? A $12.50 investment in a mouse pad with a wrist