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The causes, symptoms, and treatments of vibration white finger in Arizona

On Behalf of | Mar 28, 2023 | Workers' Compensation

The prolonged usage of handheld power tools by laborers in Arizona can pose a risk of acquiring vibration-induced white finger. The severity of the symptoms tends to worsen with increased exposure to vibrations. In addition, individuals with pre-existing conditions such as Raynaud’s disease or carpal tunnel syndrome may be more likely to develop this ailment.

Why does vibration white finger happen?

Individuals who operate vibrating machinery such as chainsaws, hammer drills, or jackhammers are susceptible to developing this ailment. The persistent and vigorous vibration may induce vasoconstriction, which causes the arterial smooth muscle to hypertrophy. As a result, the body produces elevated levels of thromboxane and serotonin, both vasoconstrictive substances. Consequently, this leads to nerve damage. This condition is a cause for many worker’s compensation complaints.

What do people with vibration white finger experience?

Characteristics of the condition include various symptoms, some of which can be particularly debilitating. Musculoskeletal issues are common, resulting in weakness and loss of grip strength. Osteoporosis may develop in the elbows or wrists, and painful bone cysts may also occur.

Nerve damage can cause a tingling or burning sensation in the hands, and ongoing exposure to vibrations can lead to continuous symptoms and reduced dexterity. The reduced blood supply to the affected area may cause one or more fingers to turn white and then blue as the condition progresses. In addition, the hands are more likely to experience painful attacks when simultaneously exposed to cold and vibration.

What is the outlook for people with vibration white fingers?

Reducing exposure to vibrating tools may alleviate the symptoms of workers who have developed this condition. However, in severe cases, symptoms may persist even after the cessation of vibration exposure. While consulting with a neurologist, dermatologist, or rheumatologist cannot eliminate symptoms, it may help to reduce them. Therefore, anyone with this condition must seek medical assistance immediately. This drastically improves their chances of regaining or retaining sensation and dexterity.