Question: Hi folks I’m also new to list. I’ve been off work for 3 weeks .went down badly with rsi possible cts (waiting hospital appt).started in my right arm but is now bilateral up to and across my shoulders and down my back…..pretty sure it’s work related. However a solicitor I saw today read in a legal book could be my age as I’m a female it could be…HORMONES…who’d be a woman!!!! mine feel like heavy lumps of lead most of the time it’s as if all my strength in my arms has gone does anyone else have this?
Answer 1: When I first looked up my diagnosis (De Q’s tenosynovitis) is a medical book, it said it was common among middle aged women and caused by too much sewing or “an overenthusiastic use of secateurs” — good thing I don’t sew or prune roses :-). The first time I looked up RSI generally in that kind of book, it told me it (carpal tunnel like stuff) was caused by pregnancy. Decent medical books don’t say things like that now. The doctor who works for the University I worked for, who has never examined me or even talked to me, told them my tenosynovitis was a “rheumatological condition” (gee thanks), when my GP’s letter clearly said that typing caused it. I can’t say what caused yours but I can suggest you look at some OK up to date medical books like the BMA ones (I read them in my local bookshop), and refer your solicitor to those.
I wasn’t allowed to take that much time off work and they were pretty horrible to me but I do sympathise with a lot of the rest of what you say — about people behaving as though you are a nuisance — the hospital doctor was terrific but my GP could offer me nothing at all. Once I had to leave my job the things he could not do before as they were “no part of his job under the Health Service” — PACT helped me without a letter from him — suddenly became things he could do (except for any medical help with RSI). Well, that’s just too late. Did you see a rheumatologist? I did. The advantage of that is that they screen for all kinds of other things that could cause the symptoms you describe even when they are convinced — as the Senior Registrar I saw was — that I had RSI. — have you talked to PACT?
Answer 2: Sadly, welcome to the Group. My symptoms started off just like yours, and all my then doctor said when I first saw him was “change your job!” Needless to say I changed my doctor instead!!! The NHS were not helpful at all, and I tried private physio and osteopaths before discovering chiropractic treatment. The problem turned out to be overuse, through static loading, of the trapezius and rhomboid muscles. Static loading is the energy used by the muscles to hold a position for a long time, like using your arms in the typing position. I have tried, and been successful at relieving 90+% of the symptoms I had by swimming, particularly breaststroke (done properly, not with the neck overly arched trying to avoid getting hair wet!) AND I use a dynaband, held out at arm’s length and pulled out to the sides so your arms are sticking out at right angles to your body. These two things, together with press ups, are using the same muscles in a different way and strengthening them. My chiropractor said that people that use a keyboard day in and day out, year in and year out are using muscles in just the same position and eventually this leads to the build up of stress in those areas that caused my problems. If you want to try my advice, you MUST be gentle at first – 20 slow breaststroke lengths are better than 30 at Mark Spitz speeds But work within your comfort zone. Re the dynaband, again, a few gentle stretches first with it, don’t force the body to do more than is comfortable. (Which is the same with any exercise really!) I hope, if you do try the aforementioned, that it relieves your pain and suffering. I am sure a lot of other good advice will be sent your way and I sincerely wish you the best and a speedy recovery.