Fighting the Carpal Tunnel Syndrome – Episode 2

This is a follow-up on this post that I wrote a year ago.  Since then my wrist-finger-arm pain deteriorated somehow (every click became painful) , so I was forced to look for other means/methods of alleviating it.

1. I tried a different glove, this time it was a much stiffer one from Thermoskin. They have a couple of interesting gloves for people with RSI and CTS. This helped me a lot for my wrist, but in the meantime the pain got worse in my finger – my index – left and double clicks – being the most affected.

2. I bought a Genius Traveler 525 mouse  – which helped a lot as well because instead of the scroll wheel, it has a "touch wheel" so that you have less strain from zooming in Autocad, for example, and two extra buttons one of which I mapped the double click so I reduced my left-clicks by half. Another big advantage of this mouse is that it is very light – ~68grams, so less strain on the wrist

3. I dreamed (and still am) of proper drivers for the Apple Magic Mouse on a Windows PC. Yes, I know they do exist, but they are far from complete since you cannot have (yet) in Windows a software that does the customized mapping of mouse gestures. My goal would be to achieve lef and right clicks without the (mechanical) clicks, like on a touchpad, so that my finger won’t have any resistance to put up with when it clicks.. It can be done on a Mac, but still waiting for that feature in Windows. In the same product line -touch mice – there’s been another product that has been recently launched (only at the Hannover CeBit so far, not in stores yet) – the Ektouch IS Touch Mouse – I’m keeping an eye on that one as well

4. Last but not least, when I could to the point of an almost impossible click, I turned to a Wacom Intuos 4s tablet. I’ve been using it for a month and a half now and I haven’t touched the mouse since. It takes a while to get used to, but afterwards it does wonders to both the wrist and the fingers. For now (fingers crossed) the pain is almost gone and I can work properly again. This tablet has also a few unique advantages that make it even more useful. It has a “touch” scroll wheel on the side (similar to the Click Wheel on the Ipods) that one can use in conjunction with, for example, the middle button mapped on one of the pen’s buttons to do Autocad or 3dsMax  zoom/pan. It has several buttons on the side of the tablet that are fully customizable by mapping any commands on them. Plus, it has an on screen menu (with sub-menus) that you can pop-up and customize with any commands you wish, saving unecessary clicks and mouse movement. One other thing, with the tablet I managed to work without the above-mentioned glove

5. I’m still using in both Autocad and even more so in 3ds Max the 3d Connexion Space Navigator. It’s an amazing piece of machinery and it’s worth every penny – I could hardly ever go back to Alt+Middle Click for 3d navigation in 3ds Max :)). It still has some limitations in Autocad, namely it loses the current selection when zooming and panning if you’re not inside a command, but it’s a very small and acceptable trade-off for the joy of using it for all the navigation in those softwares. It works in Photoshop as well (not to mention most 2d/3d applications, Google Earth, etc), but for PS I prefer the keyboard shortcuts….


Voila, this is the current state of my fight with RSI and Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. I hope it might help other people in the same situation.

If you think that my stories are crazy, please think again :)  – you cannot imagine how much harm the “harmless” keyboard and mouse in front of you can do to you.

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