Vibration White Finger (VWF) is caused by repeated and frequent use of hand held vibrating tools such as power drills, jack and kango hammers, chainsaws, whacker plates and pneumatic drills. It has been estimated that up to 1 in 10 people who work regularly with vibrating tools may get Vibration White Finger and HSE data shows that over 3000 new cases are notified each year.
It is thought that the vibration transmitted to the hands damage the small nerves and blood vessels in the fingers. Over time these may gradually lose some of their function and cause Vibration White Finger.
The symptoms are pins and needles, numbness and blanching of the fingers. Damage to the muscles, joints and bones may cause aches and pains in the hands and lower arm. The strength of grip may be weakened. In mild cases it may only affect the tips of the finger(s).
In severe cases a permanent numbness may extend along the affected fingers. Manual dexterity is impaired. It is difficult carry out fine tasks such as fastening buttons, handling loose change and screws. The cold weather often makes the condition worse. If Vibration White Finger is detected at the early stages and the sufferer is removed from vibration, there can be a complete recovery.
If, however, it is detected only at an advanced stage, then there is nothing anybody can do. The condition is permanent. The courts will take into account that your health, livelihood, family and social life can be adversely affected. Your injury may be damaged for life. You may have to change jobs or in fact may be unable to obtain employment.
The following industries are some of the most susceptible to Vibration White Finger injuries among their workforce:
- Construction Workers
- Road Workers
- Gas Pipeline Workers
- Manufacturing Workers
- Forestry and Parks Management Workers
- Foundry Workers
- Heavy Engineering workers
- Mine and Quarry Workers
- Railways Workers
- Car Manufacturers and Mechanics
- Public Utilities Workers
If you or your relative is suffering from the effects of Vibration White Finger… Contact Us now for free initial advice.