you work in an office, the chances are that you, or the person
next to you, have experienced Cumulative Trauma Disorder (CTD).
The name Cumulative Trauma Disorder has replaced Repetitive
Strain Injury (RSI). In Australia and New Zealand, Occupational
Overuse Syndrome (OOS) is the term favoured.
Because a large number of CTDs are related to computer use and
particularly to the use of the keyboard and the mouse, we thought
that it would be of value to briefly cover the subject here.
Two strategies (aside from changing occupation) are theoretically
possible to reduce the risk of CTD deriving from intense keyboard
Improving keyboard design
Improving keyboarding posture
Changing product design has resulted in the so-called ergonomic
keyboards, that is keyboards where the alphabetical keys are
split into two halves, generally angled. The split design
however, only addresses issues of hand ulnar deviation and
studies show that vertical hand posture (wrist extension)
is more important. Moreover, there is no consistent research
evidence that most of the split-keyboard designs currently
available really produce any substantial postural benefits.
Therefore, ensuring that one has and maintains the correct posture
is the only strategy to avoid or reduce the risk of Cumulative
This site offers information about this subject and should be
read only as a primer.
If you suffer from CTD, you should consult a doctor and look
for web sites that specialise in the subject. Links to some
of these sites are provided below.
Useful CTD Information Web Sites