CDC Recommends Preventative Measures for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Carpal tunnel syndrome is an occupational injury of the hands and wrists that afflicts workers in Pennsylvania who perform repetitive or forceful tasks. A new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has identified some of the industries with the highest risks for this condition that compresses the median nerve within the carpal tunnel of the wrist. Symptoms include pain, numbness, weakness and tingling in the hands and wrists. Job duties that involve repetitive tasks, vibration or forceful use of hand tools raise the risks for workers.

An analysis of 139,336 probable and possible CTS cases by the CDC showed that textile workers in the fabric, finishing and coating industry had the highest rate of CTS. Apparel manufacturing came in as the second most common industry associated with CTS. Animal slaughtering and meat processing represented the industry with the third highest rates of the injury. Women had a greater chance of suffering from the condition; compared to men, women experienced CTS 3.3 times more often.

CDC researchers concluded that high-risk industries should take proactive steps to reduce these injuries. Ergonomic evaluations could spot awkward movements and educate workers about safer practices. Industries could also strive to provide better tools that improve hand and wrist position and require less physical force to operate.

When workplace injuries happen, the injured workers are supposed to receive workers’ compensation benefits. CTS, however, does not arise from a specific accident, and a worker suffering from a repetitive motion injury that builds up over time might have an employer reject the injury report. The representation of an attorney might help a person push back against obstruction at work and collect benefits for medical care and lost pay. An attorney may assist with insurance paperwork or even file a lawsuit in a contentious case.

For more information call the Law Office of Deborah M. Truscello at 610-892-4940.