R.S.I. – Repetitive Strain Injuries
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Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI)
According to statistics from RSI Awareness, Repetitive Strain Injury is a growing problem with around half a million people in the UK alone suffering some type of RSI each year, and actually many of these cases could have been prevented.
Repetitive Strain Injury is actually a group of disorders which affect the muscles, tendons and nerves. RSI includes musculo-skeletal disorders like tendonitis, carpal tunnel syndrome and tenosynovitis which can be painful and debilitating. RSI commonly affects the neck, forearms, elbows, wrists and hands, and is caused by a person using a particular part of the body to do repetitive movements, like writing or typing. However, RSI can also be caused by tasks that require the use of vibrating equipment and manual work that involves twisting or repetitive movements.
Getting RSI compensation if you are injured at work
- Your employer was aware (or should have been aware) of the risk to you of RSI.
- Your employer did not take the appropriate measures to reduce or eliminate the risk of RSI.
- Your RSI was caused, in some way, by duties and tasks that your employer required you to carry out and that your employer did not protect you by taking reasonable steps to reduce the risk of RSI.
- You reported your symptoms and your employer did not make changes to your working environment or change your work duties.
For example, it may be that your RSI has been caused by using badly designed equipment, working at a workstation that is badly organised, inadequate breaks or rest intervals, or being forced to work in a static position or with an awkward posture. If your RSI was caused by these types of situations, your employer could be seen as negligent because they are failing in their duty to keep you safe.
RSI can be a painful condition and can have long term effects. Common symptoms include throbbing, tingling, pain or swelling in the affected area, but RSI can also cause ganglions (like cysts), carpal tunnel syndrome, inflammation of joints, inflammation of tendons and also damage to nerves. It is essential that it is diagnosed as quickly as possible so that treatment can begin. Effective treatment includes stopping what is causing the RSI, making changes to the way you work, taking anti-inflammatories, using steroid injections and undergoing therapies like physiotherapy and complementary therapies.