Imagine being in so much pain that you are not able to function or move normally. There are certain tasks, whether work or activity related that require our bodies, mostly our hands, wrists, elbows, shoulders, neck, and back to perform movements repeatedly. But, little do people know, moving these parts of the body constantly during work or activities such as sports, can cause injury and damage to the musculoskeletal system and its parts (joints, bones, ligaments, tendons, nerves, etc.). These injuries are known as repetitive motion injuries and can have a lasting effect known as repetitive motion disorder (RMD).
These injuries are among the most common types of injuries affecting people in the United States. Just by looking at the name, a repetitive motion disorder (RMD) is defined as a group of conditions affecting the musculoskeletal system, caused by movements that are performed repeatedly. RMDs are common among athletes and people who work in construction, and other really physical activities. These injuries can occur due to overexertion, incorrect stretching or posture, and friction caused by an unnatural or awkward motion such as twisting the arm or ankle.
Repetitive Motion Disorders cause symptoms of fatigue, inflammation, swelling, loss of function, stiffness, and lack of mobility. The most common RMDs include:
· Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS): CTS occurs when the median nerve in the wrist becomes pinched or compressed, often due to inflammation in the structure around the wrist. Not enough proper support, or too much wrist motion will strain the area, leading to numbness in the hands and aches and pains.
· Bursitis: Bursitis is the inflammation of the fluid-filled sac (bursa) that lies between a tendon, skin, or bone.
· Tendonitis: Tendonitis is a condition where a tendon becomes inflamed, irritated, and swollen, resulting in chronic pain.
· Epicondylitis (tennis elbow): Tennis elbow occurs on the outside of the elbow, near the upper part of the arm. This results in inflammation, soreness, and pain.
· Ganglion cyst: A ganglion cyst forms when tissues surrounding certain joints, usually the wrist, become inflamed and therefore, swells up with fluid.
· Trigger finger: Trigger finger is when the joints in the finger lock up, crack or snap, causing the finger to bend or stick out straight.
Injuries caused be repetitive movements usually develop gradually over a period of time. Symptoms may vary and come and go with certain activities or movement. If left untreated, the symptoms of an RMD can become very painful and even debilitating. Therefore, to recover completely from a repetitive motion disorder, you can avoid injury by changing the way you perform repetitive movements, the frequency they are performed, and making sure there is rest and proper technique when performing the task at hand.
To learn more about Repetitive Motion Disorders (RMDs), and how to avoid them, call Advanced Bone & Joint at (636) 229-4222 or you can request an appointment online. Advanced Bone & Joint has been providing quality and trustworthy orthopedic care in Missouri for over 35 years, continuing to combine years of experience with the latest innovations in research and technology.