Tuesday, December 09, 2008

The mouse is biting some PC users

The mouse is here to stay along with RSI ...

"Rob Skitmore of the London Science Museum predicts the mouse with remain a dominant force despite new technologies such as touch screens

As the computer mouse celebrates 40 years since its first public appearance, its role in every day routine has become widespread.

The humble mouse gave people a way to interact with their computers - both at home and at work.

What started off as a wooden shell with two metal wheels is now standard office equipment alongside the keyboard.

But this device is part of a rising problem costing the UK economy £300m a year in lost working time, sick pay and administration.

Office workers using computers constantly are at risk from repetitive strain injury (RSI), more recently known as non-specific arm pain (NSAP).

Report early

This is a collection of symptoms covering work-related upper limb problems, which can affect the hands, wrists, necks, arms and upper back.

There were 115,000 new cases last year, up from 86,000 the previous year, according to statistics by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).

"I have noticed an increase on people with upper limb problems," said Pauline Cole, a spokesperson for the Association of Chartered Physiotherapists in Occupational Health and Ergonomics (ACPOHE).

"A lot of people are using computers more, even in jobs you wouldn't traditionally expect it," she added.

She believes reporting aches and pains early on is key because the condition is much easier to treat if treated from the start."    (Continued via BBC NEWS, Tania Teixeira)    [Ergonomics Resources]

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