Houston Methodist. Leading Medicine

Wrist FAQ

Question:

I cut the tendons in my wrist when a window broke at work. I’m anxious to return to work as soon as possible. I was wondering if people with a Type A personality return to work sooner than those who are more relaxed.

Answer:

Type A personality describes someone who is hard working to the point of being driven and unable to relax. The Type A person works hard and plays hard. They tend to be over achievers and have a strong sense of time urgency.

A study of patients with arm injuries was done in the Netherlands. This showed white-collar workers (office workers) return to work sooner than blue-collar workers (manual laborers). The authors of this study think this is because of the workers’ level of education. Type of personality wasn’t studied.

There are other factors that decide how soon a patient returns to work. These include the level of injury, the extent of the injury, and how strong is the patient’s grip. The higher the injury (for example, above the elbow), the worse the result. Patients with more than one nerve or tendon cut also had poorer results.

Overall, the most important factor in returning to work after an arm injury was following the hand therapist’s advice. Type A patients may be more likely to complete the prescribed exercise program, but this hasn’t been proven yet.

Coen N.P. Bruyns, MD, et al. Predictors for Return to Work in Patients With Median and Ulnar Nerve Injuries. In The Journal of Hand Surgery. January 2003. Vol. 28A. No. 1. Pp. 28-34.

*Disclaimer:* The information contained herein is compiled from a variety of sources. It may not be complete or timely. It does not cover all diseases, physical conditions, ailments or treatments. The information should NOT be used in place of visit with your healthcare provider, nor should you disregard the advice of your health care provider because of any information you read in this topic.
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