The workers' compensation attorneys at O'Malley & Langan Law Offices know that workers can be injured in many ways. There are many jobs that can result in long-term pain and serious, long-term health issues such as carpal tunnel, mesothelioma, and hearing loss. These conditions can last years or even decades.
Some work can even result in the development of arthritis, specifically rheumatoid arthritis (RA). The disease appears to be more common among people in certain types of jobs, many of them involving manual labor.
What is Rheumatoid Arthritis?
There are over 100 different forms of arthritis, such as osteoporosis and fibromyalgia. RA itself impacts roughly one percent of the American population. It affects joints on both sides of the body (i.e. both hands, both wrists, or both knees). This symmetry is a key indicator of RA and sets it apart from other types of arthritis.
RA can also affect other body parts and systems, such as your eyes, heart, lungs, skin, and more over time. Symptoms include:
- redness & warmth
The study linking RA to certain occupations was conducted in Sweden. Researchers studied more than 3,500 people with the disease and over 5,500 people without it. According to the study author, Anna Ilar, researchers found "that work-related factors, such as airborne harmful exposures, may contribute to disease development."
In men, manufacturing jobs were found to be more likely to contribute to RA. The risk was twice as high for electricians and electronics workers, and three times as high for bricklayers and concrete workers.
For women, assistant nurses and attendants were at a slightly higher risk, but those in manufacturing jobs were not. The researchers suspect that's because fewer women work in manufacturing compared to men.
While painful, it is possible to manage your RA symptoms. Here are some tips:
- Watch out for symptoms. Early diagnosis and treatment can help you avoid the onset of further inflammation.
- Consult a physical therapist and exercise as recommended.
- Discuss medication to manage pain and inflammation with your doctor.
- Include omega-3 and -6 supplements in your diet to alleviate pain and inflammation.
Cases involving long-term injuries raise serious questions that demand serious answers. That's why it's critical that you have an experienced workers' compensation attorney you can trust on your side, fighting for your rights.
In Northeastern Pennsylvania, many people dealing with serious workplace injuries regularly rely on O'Malley & Langan Law Offices to make things right. Big firms located out of town are happy to take your case, but don't provide personal service. We know the area and the people who live here. One of our attorneys will meet with you face-to-face. Contact our office today to discuss your options.