Does carpal tunnel count as a work injury?
Most people equate workers’ compensation with being injured on the job due to an accident, but the truth is that many workers suffer injuries due to repetitive motion work responsibilities. This mostly applies to those who work on assembly lines or in production work of some sort where they are required to perform manual labor duties constantly throughout a shift. However, construction workers can suffer from repetitive motion disorders as well even when they are not constantly in motion. Carpel tunnel is actually one of the most common claims.
What is carpel tunnel?
Carpel tunnel disorder occurs after years of working with the hands and in particular is due to stress on the wrists. The wear and tear specifically occurs to the nerve that runs under the carpel bones in the wrist. While this can happen because of work duties that isolate the wrist area, the problems can also occur when the forearms are overworked. Occupations with a large number of workers who use their forearms in impacting ways can develop carpel tunnel syndrome, resulting in common workers’ comp claims.
How construction workers get carpel tunnel
Construction workers who file workers’ compensation claims commonly have used their arms and hands in a wide variety of ways when working. Concrete block layers lift blocks with their hands daily and often constantly on days they are performing significant building, which in turn places much stress on the wrist area while lifting the heavy blocks. Frame carpenters use hammers and planners regularly, both of which require extensive use of the hands and forearms. And, probably the most at risk for developing carpel tunnel are those who use electric saws and other equipment, and especially workers who operate jackhammers regularly.