WASHINGTON, DCâ€”The Medical Profession collectively gave a heavy sigh while shrugging its collective shoulders on Tuesday when announcing that the entire profession is baffled by the source of repetitive stress injuries prevalent in the wrists and forearms of young men across America.
Initial theories on the source of the repetitive stress injuries (RSI’s) focused on the number of young men who spent many hours using computer keyboards and mice. However, a recent study published in the Harvard Medical Journal found no link between computer use and an increase in the incidence of forearm and wrist RSI’s.
Dr. Harry Palmer of the Institute for Extremity Medicine and a graduate of Oxford discussed the confusion felt by all practitioners of Hippocrates’ ancient tradition of healing, saying, “For years we believed these injuries were caused by hours of typing or mouse operation. Sadly, we were incorrect. We have, however, found a link between forearm RSI’s and certain motions of the hand, but none of the subjects in our study reported any activity matching said motion.” Palmer continued, “It is as if the subjects were hand-sanding a baseball bat, or perhaps repeatedly slamming a beer bottle down on a table. Take for instance one of our patients, Edward Bates. Master Bates is a computer user and reportedly spends countless hours on the Internet and playing computer games. We just cannot seem to figure it out. At first we thought it might be caused by excessive joystick use, but sadly that still did not explain the up-and-down motion. I can assure everyone, however, that we are hard on the heels of a cause and one day we will beat this affliction.”
However, members of the medicinal brotherhood reported being more concerned by the apparent apathy felt by their subjects toward their afflictions. The head of the West Memphis Sports Medicine Facility, Dr. Jack Meihofer said, “These young men were all alike. When I, or one of my assistants, would describe the syndrome and demonstrate the motions that may have generated it, they would just mumble, or perhaps give a slight chuckle. They had no concern for their ability to roll dice or possibly stroke a salami.”
During the early days of research into the source of the repetitive stress injuries, the hopes of every doctor on Earth were raised with the discovery that the injury matched a known syndrome caused by gripping a chicken firmly by the neck and choking it for 8-12 minutes. Dr. Gerald Hancock, an associate of Palmer’s, recalled, “Sadly, it was only after we all had our spirits lifted that we discovered that a statistically insignificant number of our subjects had any contact with the poultry industry in any way.” Visibly shaken by proxy for all his bemused colleagues, he sighed, “We just felt jerked around.”
The young victims of this syndrome are not restricted by gender, however. It has been found that a much smaller percentage of the female population suffers from forearm and wrist RSI’s than in the male population. Curiously, the motion that has been theorized to cause the injuries in young women was found to resemble that of fishing in a pay phone coin-return slot for change. No explanation is forthcoming for the difference between the causes in each gender.
Such a state of puzzlement is indeed humbling for the medical community, but hopes remain strong that the cause will eventually be found for the syndrome named after the first young victim identified with the affliction, Edgar Wanker of Shreveport, Louisiana.