SUBJECT: What are Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSD's)?
Other names for MSD's cumulative trauma disorders repetitive strain injuries repetitive motion trauma occupational overuse syndrome cumulative trauma disorder (CTD)
Definition of MSD: Injuries and disorders of the muscles, nerves, tendons, ligaments, joints, cartilage and spinal discs. Exposure to physical work activities and conditions that involve risk factors may cause or contribute to MSD's. MSD's do not include injuries caused by slips, trips, falls or other similar accidents.
Some common MSD's carpal tunnel syndrome rotator cuff injury low back pain trigger finger epicondylitis tendinitis bursitis
What causes a MSD? Tissue (commonly muscle or tendon) is injured during daily, routine activities. These injuries occur as a result of decreased blood flow or added strain to the tissues. This can cause nerve compression, tendon damage, muscle strain and joint damage. Initially the injury is unnoticeable and a regular nights sleep heals the injury. Over time tissue damage is carried over into the next day. Eventually, this damage can accumulate to the point that a regular nights sleep no longer heals the damage and a musculoskeletal disorder has developed.
Common causes for developing a MSD? awkward postures (excessive bending, twisting, or reaching) excessive force (lifting heavy objects or using unnecessary force to do repetitive work such as typing) highly repetitive work extended duration of effort/ sustain one position for an extended period of time mechanical trauma (contact with sharp edges or other surfaces that compress or damage the underlying tissue) vibration cold and hot temperature extremes
Signs and Symptoms of MSD's numbness burning sensation pain tingling cramping stiffness If you are experiencing any of these symptoms please see a doctor for further evaluation and testing.
How to prevent MSD's early detection avoid situations that cause MSD (when possible) stretching taking rest breaks
What happens if I don't report my MSD? Musculoskeletal disorders occur over a extended period of time and the quicker they are reported and treated the better your chance of recovery. When these MSD's are not recognized the condition will only worsen. Over a long period of time MSD's can lead to decreased range of motion, deformity, decreased grip strength and loss of function.