Repetitive stress injuries, including carpal tunnel syndrome, are becoming increasingly common in the workplace as employees spend more time on computers. In fact, according to Microsoft, office workers use computers an average of seven hours per day, which is more hours than many people sleep at night. While office jobs are closely linked to the increasing rate of carpal tunnel cases, computer work isn’t the only way to develop the condition. Assembly line workers, mechanics, musicians, and cashiers are all required to perform repetitive hand motions that can lead to the painful symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome.
Fortunately, carpal tunnel syndrome is usually covered by workers’ compensation, which can offset your medical expenses and other costs of recovery. A workers’ compensation attorney can help you choose the best doctor for your case and make sure you receive the maximum benefits you’re entitled to.
What is carpal tunnel syndrome?
Carpal tunnel syndrome is a painful condition that affects the hand and wrist. It develops when a worker performs a repetitive motion, such as typing on a keyboard or gripping an object. Over time, these actions wear down the lubrication around the tendons in the wrist. When the lubricating system isn’t working properly, friction is created between the tendon and its protective sheath, causing inflammation and swelling. In turn, the swelling of the tendon area compresses the median nerve in the wrist, which leads to pain, tingling, and numbness.
If caught early enough, some cases of carpal tunnel syndrome can be treated with conservative methods like rest, splinting, and steroid injections. If the damage is severe, a worker may need carpal tunnel surgery followed by physical therapy to strengthen the wrist and hand. Recovery from carpal tunnel surgery can take several weeks to several months. If the median nerve has been compressed for a long time, recovery may take longer.
Is carpal tunnel syndrome covered by workers’ compensation?
Employees who suffer a job-related injury can almost always claim workers’ comp benefits. However, those with repetitive stress injuries, like carpal tunnel syndrome, often have a difficult time proving the injury occurred in and out of the course of employment. An employer’s insurance company may try to argue that an employee developed the condition outside of work, or that the injury did not occur while working for that particular employer. Many employees who file workers’ compensation claims for repetitive stress injuries have their claims denied, but that doesn’t mean they are ineligible for benefits. Sometimes, it takes the work of a skilled workers’ compensation attorney to collect compelling evidence, medical records, and expert testimonies to build a strong case that will grant the injured worker full and fair compensation.
You can get workers’ comp benefits for carpal tunnel syndrome. Call us today to file your claim.
Sudden accidents aren’t the only injuries covered by workers’ compensation. If you have developed carpal tunnel syndrome because of your job, you may be able to collect workers’ comp benefits that will pay for the costs of your medical treatment and supplement your income while you’re unable to work. At the Law Office of Gerald Brody & Associates, our workers’ compensation attorneys are experienced in helping injured employees build their claims, navigate the appeals process, and negotiate for maximum compensation. Call us today to schedule your free consultation at (619) 528-9800.