RSI Glossary

Blackberry Thumb
A colloquial term for a repetitive strain injury caused by use of the RIM Blackberry messaging device.
Bursitis
A bursa is a tiny fluid-filled sac that lubricates and cushions pressure points in your body. These bursae are located between movable parts of your body, especially at the bones, tendons, and muscles near your joints. Their function is to decrease the friction between two surfaces, and to help you move without pain. When they become inflamed, the condition is called bursitis. Bursitis is often caused by overuse, repetitive motions, or prolonged strain.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Carpal tunnel syndrome is a disorder in which the median nerve is compressed at the wrist causing symptoms like tingling, pain, coldness, and sometimes weakness in parts of the hand. It is the best known of all repetitive strain injuries, and is often as a blanket term for many specific RSI conditions. See article: Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
CTD
Cumulative Trauma Disorder, another term for RSI.
CTS
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Cubital Tunnel Syndrome
Cubital Tunnel Syndrome refers to nerve compression problems behind the elbow, where the ulnar nerve passes through the cubital tunnel. It is characterized by numbness and tingling in the ring and small fingers of the hand.
DeQuervain’s Disease
A type of Tenosynovitus that is specific to the thumb, near the wrist, typically resulting from overuse of the thumb. It is an inflammation of the sheath or tunnel that surrounds two tendons that control movement of the thumb. Also known as “DeQuervain’s Syndrome“.
DeQuervain’s Syndrome
A type of Tenosynovitus that is specific to the thumb, near the wrist, typically resulting from overuse of the thumb.
Epicondylitis
Epicondylitis is an inflamation of the inside or outside of the elbow, resulting from tiny tears in the tendons that attach the muscles of the lower arm to the elbow. It is commonly caused by repeated movement requiring a twisting arm motion, such as bowling, pitching a baseball, swinging a racket, or using a hammer. It is often referred to as “tennis elbow”.
Ergonomics
The word “ergonomics” is derived from the Greek words ergon (work) and nomos (laws). Ergonomics considers the physical and mental capabilities and limits of the worker as he or she interacts with tools, equipment, work methods, tasks and the working environment.
Fibromyalgia
Fibromyalgia is a condition characterized by long-term, body-wide pain and tender points in joints, muscles, tendons, and other soft tissues. Fibromyalgia can develop on its own or along with other musculoskeletal conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis or lupus.
See Also: Fibromyalgia Books.
Ganglion Cyst
A ganglion is a fluid-filled lump or cyst that forms beneath the skin, often on the back of the wrist or in the palm or near finger joints. They can swell when the joint is irritated dues to overuse of fingers and wrists, and often disappear with rest. If the ganglion is painful, it may restrict movement, and require medical attention.
iPod Finger
A colloquial term for a repetitive strain injury caused by using the Apple iPod’s scroll wheel.
MSD
Musculoskeletal Disorder
Myofascial Pain Syndrome
A condition that causes pain in the broad muscles in your shoulders. It is characterized by “trigger points” that, when touched, can produce shooting pain in your shoulder, arm. and back.
See Also: Books About Fibromyalgia and Myofascial Pain.
Nintendo Thumb
A colloquial term for a repetitive strain injury caused by excessive playing of video games. AKA “nintendonitis”.
OOS
Occupational Overuse Syndrome, another term for RSI.
Phalen’s Test
Test frequently used in the diagnosis of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. The patient holds both hands together in a praying position, but with the backs of the hands rather than the palms of the hands touching each other. This position contorts the carpal tunnel, and mildly pinching the median nerve. If, after a minute, the patient starts to feel tingling in the thumb, index, or middle finger, it suggests the possibility of carpal tunnel syndrome.
Raynaud’s syndrome
A medical condition where blood vessels of the hand are damaged from repeated exposure to vibration over a long period of time. The skin and muscles do not get the necessary oxygen from the blood and eventually die. Symptoms include intermittent numbness and tingling in the fingers; pale, ashen and cold skin; and eventual loss of sensation and control in the hands and fingers. Raynaud’s syndrome is also called “white finger.”
RMD
Repetitive Motion Disorder, another term for RSI.
RMI
Repetitive Motion Injury, another term for RSI.
RMS
Repetitive Motion Syndrome, another term for RSI.
RSI
“Repetitive Strain Injury” is the term applied to a variety of conditions affecting the muscles, tendons, ligaments, nerves, or joints. RSI is often work-related, and can result when a person makes too many of the same motions over a long period of time. It is characterized by numbness, pain, and a wasting and weakening of muscles. Also known as “Repetitive Stress Injury”, “Cumulative Trauma Disorder” (CTD), “Repetitive-Motion Disorder”, and “Repetitive Stress Syndrome”. See article: Repetitive Strain Injury.
Tendinitis
Tendinitis refers to an inflammation of the tendons, and produces pain and tenderness near a joint. It is often associated with a specific movement, probably one repeated often or intensely. Tendinitis is most common in the shoulders, elbows, forearms, and wrists. This term is often misspelled as “tendonitis”.
Tendon
A tendon is the tissue that connects muscles to bones. If a tendon is stressed due to overuse or prolonged stress, it may develop a frictional inflamation or small tear, resulting in tendinitis.
Tendonitis
A common misspelling of Tendinitis.
Tenosynovitus
Similar to Tendinitis, except that Tenosynovitus refers to inflammation of a tendon within it’s sheath, or irratation of the sheath itself. See also: DeQuervain’s Disease.
Tennis Elbow
The laymans term for Epicondylitis.
Thoracic Outlet Syndrome
Thoracic Outlet Syndrome (TOS) consists of a group of distinct disorders that affect the nerves in the brachial plexus (nerves that pass into the arms from the neck) and various nerves and blood vessels between the base of the neck and axilla (armpit). See article: Thoracic Outlet Syndrome.
Trigger Finger
Irritation of the sheath surrounding finger tendons is referred to as trigger finger. The sheath becomes thickened or swollen, or develops a callous, which prevents the tendon from moving smoothly, causing the finger to lock into a bent position. The finger may straighten with a sudden visible “snap”, or in severe cases, may not straighten at all. See article: What Is Trigger Finger?.
WMSD
Work-Related Musculoskeletal Disorder is a term used by the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety for RSI. Also sometimes abbreviated as “WRMSD”.

Comments are closed