This is the first video in a three-part series, where noise and vibration specialists Teli Chinelis and Sue Hewitt detail exactly what hand-arm vibration is and answer some common questions surrounding it. Look out for parts two and three coming soon.
What is Hand-Arm Vibration?
Hand-arm vibration refers to the exposure of the hand and arm to vibration through a vibrating surface, this is most commonly from a power tool, but also sometimes is from hand-guided machinery such as lawnmowers, or floor polishers or maybe from hand-fed machinery such as pedestal grinders or belt linishing machines.
What is Hand-arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS)?
Hand-arm vibration syndrome is a single term to describe the range of possible health effects that can be caused by hand-arm vibration exposure. These include:
- Vascular effects such as vibration white finger which is blanching or whiteness of the fingers in cold conditions.
- Sensorineural effects such as numbness, tingling and reduced manual dexterity which are due to damage to the nerves. It is the sensorineural component of HAVS that is the most debilitating component, having the greatest effect on the quality of life.
- Other musculoskeletal effects are associated with exposure to vibration such as reduced grip strength.
Hand-arm vibration exposure is also thought to increase the risk of developing carpal tunnel syndrome and Dupuytren’s contracture.
As always, if you have any issues associated with noise or vibration please contact the relevant experts at Finch Consulting.
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