Question: I noticed the page and RSI and wanted to ask you some questions. I recently had an exam where I felt a tingling in my hand, a sought of sharp pain and weakness. This was after 1 hour of writing, and after this period there was a remaining 2 hours where I tried to write with my left hand and dominant right but in pain. My preparation for my exams consisted of writing things down many times hundreds of times because this is the only way I can remember, and addition this particular exam was the last one of the week in which there were 3 of the same time periods. My question is could this be RSI or does this just effect people who work on computers. I have a mouse on my computer but it is a rubber mouse on a laptop requiring the use of only one finger and when I use this mouse for long periods I get the same pain only lesser than the excruciating pain I had in my exam. Would it be a waste of time going to my doctor and telling him this to try to get some kind of letter to say why I hardly wrote anything in this particular exam and passed all the rest (there were 7 exams in total).
Answer 1: Writer’s Cramp is caused by a form of RSI, and you need to take it easy and try avoiding this recurring. Hopefully now exams are over your hands will recover. Also try things to reduce trauma to joints/tendons. Fat pens are also easier to hold, some find non biros also better as less pressure required, etc. re the exam thing only the doctor and exam board can decide that one, but if you think you have a case then might be worth a try.
Answer 2: I got an additional 10 minutes per hour in my exams last year because of my RSI. You have to apply for these extensions in advance (there was a March deadline for May exams) and I had to get a note from my doctor. This information might be a bit too late for you, rick, but others might benefit.
Answer 3: Writer’s cramp was the first ever recorded form of RSI by the monks in the 18th century!