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Radiology computers may be causing workplace injuries

According to a new review article, the modernization of radiology may be causing some South Carolina radiologists to experience neck and back pain. The article was published in the Journal of the American College of Radiology in March.

An ACR survey of almost 500 radiology practice leaders found that nearly a third of all practicing radiologists in the U.S. experience lower back pain, and 25 percent of those surveyed experience neck pain. Repetitive stress injuries afflict 16 percent of the radiologists. The author of the review said that one of the reasons that individuals who work in radiology could be suffering from these ailments is the profession's transition from film to PACS, or a picture archiving and communication system.

Digital PACS workstations require radiologists to spend long hours in front of computer monitors. In addition, many radiology professionals use nonergonomic chairs and fail to take enough breaks, which cause stress to their necks and lower backs over time. Negative work environments and poor job satisfaction can also exacerbate the issue. The review suggested that radiology departments and practices provide ergonomic workstations to their staff members to prevent injuries.

On-the-job injuries can force people to miss weeks or months of work, making it difficult to pay their bills and support their families. However, most injured workers are eligible to file workers' compensation claims for benefits, which cover their medical expenses and provide wage replacement payments while they recover at home. Injured workers could learn more about the workers' compensation claims process by contacting a workplace injuries lawyer. If someone has already had his or her workers' comp claim denied, a lawyer could file an appeal and work to obtain the benefits his or her client needs.

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