Your upper body is composed of numerous delicate bones, tendons, nerves, and muscles, and an injury to your neck, shoulder, arm, elbow, wrist, or hand can mean that you will not be able to work and may require expensive surgery to repair.
According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, injuries to the upper extremities were the most common workplace accident in the country, and this highlights the fact that any worker in any industry can suffer an upper body injury in South Carolina.
If you have sustained an upper body injury at work, contact an experienced and dedicated Charleston upper body workplace injury lawyer who can guide you through the process of learning about and identifying risk factors for upper body injuries. An experienced workers compensation lawyer can help explain the procedure for filing a workers’ compensation claim.
Different Types of Injuries
Upper body injuries in the workplace tend to be a result of strain and stress over an extended period rather than the result of a single event. Upper body workplace injuries can result from relatively normal movements of the hands, arms, shoulders, neck, and torso and in conjunction with actions such bending, stretching, gripping, and twisting. Some of the most common upper body workplace injuries include shoulder, arm, wrist, and hand injuries.
Injuries to the shoulders account for a large majority of upper body workplace injuries in Charleston. The shoulder is composed of numerous muscles, nerves, and ligaments, and importantly the rotator cuff, which is a common site of injury. Some common shoulder injuries include:
- Biceps tendinitis
- Adhesive capsulitis
- Subacromial bursitis
- Rotator cuff tendinitis
Generally, repetitive arm movements, working with arms overhead, and load bearing activities, cause rotator cuff injuries. Rotator cuff injuries and shoulder injuries affect workers across all industries, from more sedentary positions to those including highly physically demanding positions.
Any worker can sustain a workplace shoulder injury including painters, welders, postal workers, and assembly line operators, nursing staff, and factory workers.
The arm and specifically the elbow is an injury that affects numerous workers. Some of the most common arm and elbow injuries include:
- Triceps tendinitis
- Biceps tendinitis
- Radial tunnel syndrome
Some of the most common professions that lead to arm and elbow injuries include carpenters, painters, plumbers, roofers, and computer operators.
Wrist and Carpal Tunnel
Almost all workers and in all industries are familiar with carpal tunnel, which occurs when the median nerve in the wrist is compressed. Symptoms of carpal tunnel include tingling and numbness in the hand, pain, and weakness. Wrist injuries are often caused by:
- Repetitive hand motions
- Periods of extended wrist flexion
- Mechanical vibrations
Some of the common industries and professions that see an increased rate of wrist and carpal tunnel injuries include cashiers, office workers, assembly line workers, and garment workers.
The hand is a crucial part of a workers professional and daily life, and any injury to this part of the body can result in lengthy recovery periods. Some of the most common hand injuries include:
- Flexor tenosynovitis
- Extensor tenosynovitis
- Mucous cysts
- Trigger thumb
As with many of the other upper body injuries workers in all occupations including, landscapers, desk workers, and electronic assemblers, are susceptible to hand injuries.
What Causes Upper Body Injuries
Workplace injuries that affect any of the upper extremities tend to be the result of extended periods of use, rather than from a single traumatic event. Many upper body related work injuries claims in Charleston result from work patterns when the body is placed in an awkward position for an extended period of time. Some of the work patterns that can lead to upper body injuries include:
- Fixed or constrained body positions
- Repetitive motions
- Rapid pace
- Force concentrated on small areas of the body
- Mechanical vibrations
- Prolonged Restricted posture
Because many of the structures in the upper body are extremely complex, injuries to an upper extremity can result in significant trauma and require lengthy periods of rest, rehabilitation, or even surgery.
Contact a Charleston Upper Body Injury Attorney
If you have suffered an injury to your neck, shoulder, arm, wrist, hand, or any other area of your upper body while at work, contact an experienced Charleston upper body injury lawyer today to discuss your injury.