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Protecting Your hands

26 January 2017

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Our hands are very important in our daily lives and even a small cut or a strain may hamper the simplest movement,the more exposed our hands are, the move vulnerable they are to injury.

Daily Actions that we take for granted. Such as brushing teeth, combing hair and dressing up-playing music instrument, Typing, writing and everything that using our hand will lose. Ability to touch and feel may also be hindered.

The most common injuries are lacerations at fingertips and fingers. Followed by wrists and forearms. Initial Presentation or symptoms would be swelling, deformed finger or hand and numbness. Steps to correct or treat it can only be taken once the root cause of the pain has been identified.

Work related to hand injuries sustain trauma in various places . Starting from fingertips lacerations, multiple cuts involving inner structure from bone, tendon, nerves artery and veins. Construction and agriculture industries also see a number hand related injuries. Slicing machines or stamping machines are often the common culprits. Severe injuries may mean amputation of one or more fingers,  Even the hand or any level of the upper limb. Crush injuries to any part of the limb usually require amputation at the level of injury.

Apart from direct injuries, Chronic repetitive action such as factory related work and even typing or writing can cause harm to hands. Long –term heavy duty work also tends to cause osteoarthritis to small joints and trigger finger problems. Example, Carpel tunnel syndrome effect people who are doing computer-related jobs. Long period of time without proper conditioning. Stretching and strengthening, Will cause inflammation and irreversible damage.

Hand injuries generally require medical attention, the sooner the repair work can begin, the risk of infection less.

Although medical attention is available for hand injuries, prevention is always the better option.  Staff or employee should undergone training and certification for any of handling machine that mostly that can harm them.  The reason is, so they can handle and run the machine  appropriately.

If an accident or incident does occur, a safety board convenes to discuss factors that led to the accident and institute new measures to overcome them.

However, workers who complain of pain from head-related and back symptoms should take into consideration the nature of the work and whether ergonomic changes should be made at the work place. Fatigue, stress and overall mental well-being has an impact on the ability of the worker to focus and keep safety precautions in mind while working.

By Dr Ruban Sivanoli, Consultant Orthopaedic, Hand and Microsurgeon (NST life & time health)