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Workers' Compensation Covers Repetitive Trauma Injuries

Posted on in Workers' Compensation

Workers' Compensation Covers Repetitive Trauma InjuriesNot all workplace injuries originate from a single event. Actions that put continued stress on your body can gradually cause health conditions called repetitive trauma injuries. Most major workplace injuries occur at jobs that require physical labor or use dangerous equipment or materials. Workers at any type of job can develop a repetitive trauma injury because the movement causing the injury can be minute. Repetitive trauma injuries are the most difficult injuries to prove in a workers’ compensation claim because of their gradual development.

Examples

A repetitive trauma injury is often a pain or weakness in a muscle or joint that develops after years of putting stress on that part of the body. Examples of repetitive trauma injuries that occur at work include:

  1. Carpal tunnel syndrome: Continued use of your hands causes swelling that pinches your nerves and creates pain and numbness.
  2. Tendonitis: The tendons that connect muscles to bones can become inflamed and potentially rupture if they are overstretched or overused.
  3. Bursitis: The bursae sacs between bones and tendons can become inflamed, most commonly in the hips, elbows, and knees.
  4. Back injuries: You can strain your lumbar vertebrae and vertebral discs through heavy lifting or by poor posture while sitting.
  5. Stress fractures: Repetitive motions, such as running or walking, can create tiny fractures in a bone, especially if you are not wearing supportive shoes.

Filing a Claim

It can be difficult to prove that a repetitive trauma injury arose from your work because you cannot give an exact date for when the injury occurred. To create a strong workers’ compensation case for your repetitive trauma injury, you should:

  • Visit a doctor when you first experience symptoms of the injury;
  • Explain to the doctor which repetitive actions you perform at work; and
  • Inform your employer as soon as you suspect that your condition may be work-related.

Your doctor can determine whether your repeated tasks at work may have strained your body and caused your injury. The workers’ compensation insurer will likely claim that you had a pre-existing condition or that your activity outside of work caused your injury. The repetitive motion that caused your injury was likely not unique to your work, but your job may have greatly increased the frequency of that motion. For instance, most people type on a computer outside of work, but a job that requires frequent computer use can cause you to develop carpal tunnel syndrome.

Slow-building Injuries

You should consult with a doctor before concluding whether your job may be the source of an unexplained injury. A McHenry County workers’ compensation attorney at Botto Gilbert Lancaster, PC, can connect your work requirements to your current injury. To schedule a free consultation, call 815-338-3838.

Source:

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/176443.php

Illinois State Bar Association State Bar of Wisconsin Crystal Lake Chamber of Commerce Illinois Trial Lawyers Association McHenry County Bar Association
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