With an increasing number of employees around the country sitting at a desk for hours on end at work, many people have begun to develop carpal tunnel syndrome. Carpal tunnel occurs when the tunnel in the wrist becomes too narrow, which puts an immense amount of pressure on the median nerve. It can result in a great deal of discomfort as well as weakness, tingling and numbness.
Workers' compensation most often applies to significant injuries that take place at work, such as slip and falls. However, workers' comp can sometimes apply to instances of carpal tunnel. The employee will need to provide evidence that his or her duties directly correlate to the condition because in some cases, carpal tunnel is a genetic issue.
What activities most typically result in carpal tunnel?
Certain professions have a greater chance of developing carpal tunnel than others. Some of the most common include:
- Administrative workers
- Data entry employees
- Workers in the food service industry
- Delivery workers
- Truck drivers
- Butchers and chefs
Even if you do not neatly fall into any of the above professions, you may still develop carpal tunnel if you conduct certain activities. Carpal tunnel may develop in your wrists if you frequently type on a keyboard, operate a cash register, use vibrating power tools or perform routine mechanical work. You may also have a workers' comp claim if you regularly press, cut, twist, slice or push objects.
How can you prove it is a work injury?
When you begin to develop symptoms of the disorder, you need to see a medical professional right away. A physician will be able to diagnose your exact condition by taking X-rays. The doctor will also take into account the type of work you do and provide a professional opinion as to whether your carpal tunnel most likely occurred as a result of your job.