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CDC identifies which jobs are riskier for carpal tunnel

Carpal tunnel syndrome is a condition in which a compressed median nerve causes pain, tingling, numbness and weakness in the hand or wrist. Anyone who engages in activities that put the hands and wrists in awkward postures or that involve forceful, repetitive tasks is at risk. Unfortunately, some Texas jobs have a high rate of CTS among employees.

A new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has identified what industries and occupations see the highest CTS rates. Its data was culled from the California Department of Public Health, which analyzed workers' compensation claims for CTS in that state.

The CDPH identified a total of 139,336 cases of probable and possible CTS among California workers between the years 2007 and 2014. As far as those with CTS, 8.2 out of 10,000 full-time equivalent workers were women. Men made up 2.5 out of 10,000 FTE workers with CTS.

The job industries with the highest CTS risk rates are as follows. Textile, fabric finishing and coating mills saw 44.9 cases per 10,000 FTE workers. The apparel manufacturing industry, especially apparel accessory manufacturing, saw a rate of 43.1. Animal slaughtering and processing plants were at 39.8.

Workers could consider ergonomic evaluations to limit their risk of injury. There are also tools that can correct poor hand and wrist posture.

If these don't ultimately prevent the development of CTS, they can still receive benefits via the workers' compensation program. A worker will need to let their employer know their intentions beforehand and then consider hiring a lawyer. With legal assistance, they can prove that their condition is a workplace injury. If the claim is denied, an attorney could help mount an appeal.

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