Texting increased risk of repetitive strain injury

ATLANTA — Edmund N. Biden, D.Phil, from the University of New Brunswick Institute of Biomedical Engineering, discussed the risk factors for repetitive strain injuries in upper extremity amputees at the Association of Children’s Prosthetic-Orthotic Clinics Annual Meeting, here.

The study surveyed transradial and transhumeral amputees who were considered of working age, approximately 15 years and older, and asked whether or not they experienced any kind of pain, and if so, how intense it was. Survey responses were received from 33 individuals, and their responses were compared with able-bodied controls.


Edmund N. Biden


The researchers found that hand and wrist pain was reported four times more in the sound limb than previously reported in studies. They also found significant differences in reported hand and thumb, and wrist and arm pain between the amputee group and the control group. Additionally, females reported higher levels of pain than males, acquired amputees reported more pain than congenital amputees and individuals with a high body mass index reported more residual limb pain than participants with a lower body mass index.

“Pain is significantly higher in the amputees than it is in the normally-limbed, which was indicative of repetitive strain injury risk,” Biden said. “And the repetitive strain injury risk appears to be particularly acute in the sound wrist.”

The researchers also found that participants who reported that they are “regularly” or “always” texting had higher levels of pain in their sound limb than “occasional” or non-texters.

“We are really concerned that texting is going to be a long-term issue,” Biden said. “And we really don’t know what the implications of that are going to be.”

For more information:

Biden EN. Repetitive strain injury in upper limb amputees. Presented at: Association of Children’s Prosthetic-Orthotic Clinics Annual Meeting. April 10-13, 2013. Atlanta.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.