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Swollen hands after using leafblower. Help!  

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Swollen hands after using leafblower. Help!

Post Sat Sep 29, 2012 2:07 pm

As I write now my hands are quite swollen in size.

I was using a leafblower to clean up garden debris for about 15 minutes. After I had finished I took off my gardening gloves to reveal these monstrosities of hands! Obviously the high-frequency vibration of the leafblower has done something to something in my hands. It is a bit scary. My fingers are still coloured normally. Only major difference is that I can't ball my hand into a fist properly. :oops:

Now, don't get me wrong, they have reduced slightly in size since 20 minutes ago, but they are still a bit swollen, particularly on the middle 3 fingers.

I tried to self diagnose myself off the internet, and it seems to be a fairly common consequence of using machinery with high-frequency vibration.

Should I get to a doctor, or do ye think it will go down in swelling itself?
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Mr Rhode Island Red
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Re: Swollen hands after using leafblower. Help!

Post Sat Sep 29, 2012 2:59 pm

Hmmm. I would wait a while to see if the swelling keeps going down :think: But I'm definitely no expert and don't like going to the doctor! :roll:
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Re: Swollen hands after using leafblower. Help!

Post Sat Sep 29, 2012 3:25 pm

I think I will be fine :lol: swelling has gone down considerably
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Mr Rhode Island Red
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Re: Swollen hands after using leafblower. Help!

Post Sat Sep 29, 2012 4:57 pm

No. 1 Son gets this when he rides his bike, especially when there's a nip in the air. He's dead skinny so looks a bit odd when he develops big sausage fingers. Swelling usually subsides fairly quickly though.
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Re: Swollen hands after using leafblower. Help!

Post Sat Sep 29, 2012 5:09 pm

Back in the day, various workers got 'whitefinger from using lots of vibrating machinery
Like a lot of things, it's something (they think) you can have a genetic disposition to, especially if you have any raynaud's disease in the family.
could be on that spectrum?
I have no medical knowledge, but an ex was diagnosed with raynaud's after he starting using a chainsaw as part of his job and had to give it up, because continual use would have caused him problems. Occasional use wasn't a problem, but he did get numb/swollen/pale fingers.
(there were no other problems with the condition, but he was told he was more susceptible to cold damage to the extremities and had to take care as he got older)
If your fingers do go pale and or numb in the cold (more than usual), that's an indicator. Apparently much more common in males than females
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Re: Swollen hands after using leafblower. Help!

Post Sat Sep 29, 2012 8:24 pm

Thankfully, my balloon hands have subsided :dance: Back to the ordinary, bony hands :mrgreen: :lol:

It must have been the muscles/blood vessels in my hand getting shook out of their minds from the leafblower's high-frequency vibrations.

I think from now on I'll be going back to the more traditional method of a rake and a few bin-bags when it comes to ridding the garden of leaves, I wouldn't want to cause any lasting damage...
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Re: Swollen hands after using leafblower. Help!

Post Sat Sep 29, 2012 8:39 pm

I wonder if putting your hands in tepid water would help?
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Re: Swollen hands after using leafblower. Help!

Post Sat Sep 29, 2012 8:57 pm

You are right that you experienced a short term reaction to the vibration of the leaf blower. Surprised it happened after only 15 minutes. The normal advice would be to only use it for short periods of time, but I would class 15 minutes as short. Obviously not short enough for you! Wearing thick padded gloves helps as they absorb a lot of the vibration. You are unlikely to have caused any lasting damage, although if you continued to use it and ignored the symptoms, they would take longer to resolve each time.
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Re: Swollen hands after using leafblower. Help!

Post Sun Sep 30, 2012 8:19 am

It's quite common in the construction industry; there are very strict regulations about the sue of vibrating equipment. Hope it gets better soon.
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Re: Swollen hands after using leafblower. Help!

Post Sun Sep 30, 2012 9:27 am

Glad it isn't just me experiencing it. :lol:
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