Friday, June 23, 2006

Tendon update

Blogging and writing has been slow lately, due to my massively fucked tendon. The background: at my dayjob, I have to use a mouse a lot, due to lots of fiddly work and having many windows open. One of my many bad habits is just letting my hand rest on the mouse, even when I'm not using it - and the bottom corner of my right hand rests on the desk or mouse pad. The bone there has been extremely sore for quite a while. Anyway, I was getting out of a minicab the other day, when I slipped, and landed on my hand. Not sure how I bent it, but it yanked the tendon or muscle or something on that corner bone, and felt like someone had rammed a red hot skewer into my wrist and down the length of my arm.

Ouch. The pain went from my wrist almost to my elbow, and I could barely bend my wrist at all. I could hardly get my keys out of my pocket or open my fly, and when you expose yourself to strangers as much as I do, you need a quick wrist action. So I couldn't do any typing for a few days. I spent the time having the odd surf (with my left hand), resting my right hand, and trying to bend it as much as I could, as well as flexing the fingers open and closed. After a week, it was nearly back to normal - normal being just the sore bone corner bit.

I made the dayjob get me a fancy sideways mouse (I say "made", I actually said "please get me this otherwise my hand will fall off and I won't be able to do any work ever again"), so that my hand would be in the "normal handshake position", according to the Ergonomitrons, and tried not to use it much. As it's a sideways one, my arm isn't twisted, my hand doesn't rest on the desk, and I can't keep my hand on the mouse for too long, because it just falls off. It's a sideways mouse, you see. Click here for pictures and info. At home, I got a normal, full size Macally keyboard for my Mac, so that I can position it anywhere I want. And I'm trying to limit the typing and mousing, which is a bit tricky when you make your living from typing and mousing, and you're in the middle of a script draft that someone's paid for and have got to deliver an outline that someone else has paid for. Wrist and hand are okay now, outline is done, script is going nicely. Delayed blog posts will be here next week.

So keep an eye on your bits and pieces, fellow scribomonkeys. Observe the proper RSI-avoidance techniques, and sit properly. And above all, if a part of your body basically shuts down for a week, take that as a warning to change your habits.


Dom Carver said...

At my night job today I had to complete a workstation safety thingy on the pooter. I failed. I guess that when you spend 12 - 16 hours in front of the pooter each day you're gonna pick up some bad habits. Probably why I'm hunched to the height of 3 foot.

Tip: Do not rest the palm of your hand on the desk while you're using the mouse or keyboard. Keep your hand, wrist, and elbow horizontal.

Hope you're back to normal :-)

Chris (UK Scriptwriter) said...

Following that link and looking at the way your bones twist when using a normal mouse makes me want to go and buy one for myself.

Glad you hear you are on the mend.


James Moran said...

It's made a huge difference, my corner bone thingy isn't as sore as it was, and my arm is fine. I think they may be exaggerating the bone bending slightly, my radius or ulna would probably shatter if it bent as much as the one in the diagram - but the thing still does the job. It's bloody ugly, looks like a melted iron. Quite light, though.

Paul said...

Dude, get to a fucking doctor. You could have a hairline fracture or summat. I only say this 'cos I'd hate for you to lose your stroke. It's a fine stroke.

James Moran said...

I should explain, I didn't actually hit the ground, I just slipped on my way out of the car, and fell back into the seat - so my hand landed on the soft cushiony bit, yanking the tendon. That it went so horribly wrong after such a mild slip was a bit worrying though.

It's okay now, so I'm fairly sure it's not a fracture or anything - but thank you for looking out for my stroke. And let's hope nobody misinterprets what we're saying as in any way dirty.

Lynsey said...

Ooops (hides face in shame) slighty guilty of a misinterpretation there. Sorry.
And as for your wrist I can totally sympathise. It sounds like what happened to me at school while being in goal one wet afternoon. At least I made a great save and impressed a few people though.

The Artist said...

i wish someone would fuck my tendon. it won't shutup about how i smell.

Terri Nixon said...

Hi, followed this link from The Blue Cat - had to say: I'm also guilty of leaving my hand on the mouse, (aren't we all?) but I have found a purely magical mousepad which I've had for a couple of years now; it's got a wrist pad attached that's filled with lovely cooling gel, as well as being quite a funky colour.
Get one; PC World, about 12 quid. Baahhhgin, mate.

Jools said...

Or how about getting one of those whizzy voice activated things!! You can then spend yer whole day just chatting to your computer...does make you look a bit mad, but will make a change for the computer cause lets face it all they ever hear is someone swearing at them. Go on make a PC's day by talking sweet nothings to it for once :)

Anonymous said...

Something similar happened to me. I too was guilty of bad mouse posture. One day I pinged a tendon in my right hand while foolishly trying to open the door of a public toilet with one finger (minimal contact with streptococcal surfaces, you see). Pain in the heel of my palm and up my forearm, just as you described. After 3 months it's still not right. Someone said I might have to undergo an operation - where the surgeon grafts on a tendon taken from a cadaver. Bring it on!