Vibration injuries are usually known as Vibration white finger (VWF) or Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS) which is an industrial injury caused by the continuous use of vibratory tools such as pneumatic drills and grinders. It is a condition found commonly in industries with heavy tool use such as mining and engineering however it can still be found in other job types such as highway maintenance. It is a condition that affects thousands of workers every year however due to the awareness of the condition increasing over recent years this amount has fallen.
Sufferers of VWF may find that the term Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome is often used by health professionals to explain the condition due to it being broader in its description of the condition. HAVs can affect many different aspects of the body such as nerves, joints and muscles and in nearly all cases one of the main indications is white fingers.
Symptoms of Vibration Injuries
Symptoms can vary depending on the extent of the damage caused. Below are some of the common warning signs:
· Loss of strength and dexterity
· Blanching or whiteness and redness of the fingers
· Tingling, numbness and pain in the hands and fingers
· Throbbing and swelling of the fingers
Symptoms usually are tingling and/or numbness in the hands and fingers. As the symptoms get worse, sufferers can lose feeling in their hands and fingers which prevents them to complete easy task which they were able to before.
Symptoms usually affect the small blood vessels in the hand and fingers where blood flow circulation is restricted. This causes blanching and numbness in the fingers and arms.
Symptoms may be in the form of arthritis, tendonitis and changes in muscle fibre. Sufferers may notice reduced mobility and pain in their hand and arms.
What has caused my condition?
Vibration injuries can arise in one or both hands, arms and wrists due to exposure to vibration, often during the course of a person’s employment or just after the employee has ceased their employment.
There are a number of causes due to the usage of vibratory machinery or tools such as:
· Pneumatic Drills
· Chain Saws
· Angle Grinders
Using such equipment can restrict blood flow, causing fingers and hands to suffer from attacks of red and white discolouration causing white finger syndrome. Pain and discomfort are also present during flare-ups, which usually last from between two to 30 minutes depending on the extent of the damage to the hands.
It is important that when using vibratory equipment that the employee is always provided with the proper protection. Most commonly this is in the form of protective gloves, also monitoring the amount of time the employee is spending using the equipment can prevent damage to the hands and fingers.
Legal Advice and Support for Vibration Injuries
Our panel solicitors have years of experience running vibration injury claims and will therefore be able to handle your case with a great deal of skill and expertise. From gathering evidence and working with specialists, you can rely on them to ensure that you have access to the very best financial and medical support available.
Our Panel of Solicitors work hard to identify who is responsible for your condition and even in the circumstances that the company is no longer trading we can still locate their insurance provider and obtain the compensation you deserve.