Telling The Difference Between RSI And Carpal Tunnel Syndrome


It may look as though a carpal tunnel problem and a repetitive strain injury (RSI) are exactly the same, when you realize that a carpal tunnel symptom seems to resemble any symptom that stems from an RSI. However, what is going on inside the wrist and hand is quite different in the two cases, and there is no genetic component to an RSI. And yet the carpal tunnel hand disorder does sometimes seem to arise from repetitive strains, so how different are they, really?

Carpal tunnel research has shown in recent years that the main causes of the syndrome are indeed either genetic or traumatic, resulting from an actual arm injury, with some additional connections as well to a few particular illnesses.

Some of the risk factors include genetics that create a narrow carpal tunnel area in the arm, obesity, rheumatoid arthritis or autoimmune diseases. And women are much more likely to develop carpal tunnel symptoms than are men. So arm injuries and many other factors predispose people to develop this disorder.

And yet, as discussed on the University of Maryland Medical Center website, preventing carpal tunnel problems does often relate to the type of work a person does, and whether it involves repetitive activities. For example, meat and fish packers have a high risk of developing the disorder, with others involved in equally laborious jobs coming right behind them. In such cases, what is at first diagnosed as a symptom of an RSI could instead be a carpal tunnel symptom, and the difference between them might be hard to discern.

Yet carpal tunnel research still suggests that even in cases where the syndrome appears to be caused by some kind of repetitive strain, there was some kind of underlying factor already in place that made these workers more susceptible than others doing similar work. It may have been an RSI that aggravated that problem and created the carpal tunnel symptom, though. So that means that while this syndrome is not technically an RSI, it can still be found in a higher percentage of workers who are in RSI-risky jobs.

One approach to relieving the pain of carpal tunnel syndrome is through the use of magnetic therapy bracelets. Wearing a magnetic hematite bracelet, for instance, is believed to bring relief from a variety of conditions related to the hands and wrists.



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