Albeit not irreversible, the condition is critical as the tendons in the fingers are visibly damaged and their functioning severely impaired. The impossibility of bending several fingertips can cause acute pain in the subject. Such condition is the result of a prolonged, repetitive fingers’ pressure on four specific keys, W-A-S-D, hence WASD Syndrome. It is necessary to straighten the tendons with the aid of one or more splints applied to one or more fingers, although in most cases, surgical intervention and corticosteroid injections are used as complementary treatments. The splints are meant to keep the end of the tendons from separating as they heal. They must be worn at night for a period of 6-to-8 weeks. WASD Syndrome must be treated early to help the patient retain the full range of motion in the fingers. If such deformity remains untreated for more than 4 weeks, treatment becomes problematic. Today, WASD Syndrome affects a surprisingly high percentage of individuals in technologically advanced countries.
9 In a phone interview conducted 19 months post study, all subjects reported that their presurgery symptoms were much improved. They reported improvements in their ability to get dressed (being able to close zippers and buttons), tool handling (without dropping the tools), cooking (without dropping the pans, being able to peel potatoes) and playing video games.
Heuser, A.; Kourtev, H.; Winter, S.; Fensterheim, D.; Burdea, G.; Hentz, V.; Forducey, P.; 2007, “Telerehabilitation Using the Rutgers Master II Glove Following Carpal Tunnel Release Surgery: Proof-of-Concept”, published on IEEE Transactions on Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering, vol. 15, no.1, March 2007
10 This syndrome came into force as an industrial disease in April 1985. As a result sufferers were able to claim compensation and disability benefit.
A G Cleary, H McKendrick, J A Sills, 2002, “Hand-arm vibration syndrome may be associated with prolonged use of vibrating computer games”, British Medical Journal, Volume 324, Number 7332, p.301-301 (2002)