Carpal tunnel syndrome is the result of inflamed tissue throughout the arms, wrists, and hands. This painful condition is a common experience for many office employees who repetitively utilize their hands and wrists in order to operate keyboards and other computer equipment on a daily basis. Carpal tunnel syndrome has been classified as a recognized occupational disease and can have a substantial impact on an individual’s ability to perform their job responsibilities. Luckily, workers suffering from this injury are eligible under the New Jersey workers’ compensation statutes to receive financial support for necessary medical treatment and reimbursement for lost wages.
Substantiating a Carpal Tunnel Workers’ Compensation Claim
From a legal perspective, the most challenging aspect of successfully handling a carpal tunnel workers’ compensation claim is the fact that the associated symptoms of hand pain, numbness, burning, and tingling may not manifest in the employee for a number of years. Left untreated, the condition may result in permanent loss of grip strength, persistent pain, and loss of sensation in the extremities.
Thus, it is important that, if you suspect you may be suffering from carpal tunnel syndrome, you should immediately notify your employer of your suspicions. This is an important initial step in order to ensure that your employer has awareness of your injury – both to prevent the injury from worsening and also to create an evidentiary record. In order to qualify under the New Jersey workers’ compensation law, you will need to demonstrate that you suffered your injury as a result of your employment as opposed to other potential causes, such as pre-existing medical conditions that are not related to your job. For example, assume you have contracted a serious case of carpal tunnel syndrome from work as a court reporter, but, in your spare time, your hobbies include playing the guitar or blogging. In such a situation, the insurance company may try to argue that it was not your work that caused your ailment and, therefore, you are not qualified to receive workers’ compensation.
That is where the experienced attorneys at Petro Cohen come into play in being able to work with you to prove your claim is valid. One of the first thing we tell our clients is that it is vital to maintain a detailed record of your injury. Your employer’s insurance provider will often challenge claims that are not backed by sufficient evidence of the injury and refuse to provide coverage. You should consult with a competent workers’ compensation attorney in order to explore your legal options for obtaining the workers’ compensation benefits to which you may be entitled to receive. We can assist you in building a convincing case that will maximize your chances of success.
Carpal Tunnel Treatments
There are a number of effective medical treatments available to those suffering from pain related to carpal tunnel syndrome, including the following.
- Splinting: If you are suffering from a minor to moderate occurrence of carpal tunnel syndrome, your physician may apply a splint or arm brace in order to maintain a straight position of the limb. This is intended to alleviate the pressure from the nerves located in the wrists and will reduce the subsequent pain and loss of feeling that are commonly associated with carpal tunnel syndrome. Your doctor may require you to wear the splint all day or only during the nighttime hours.
- Corticosteroid Injections: Some patients may opt for temporary relief of pain via a corticosteroid injection. Because this is only a temporary treatment, the injured employee will require regular injections to remain pain-free and functional in the workplace.
- Surgical Intervention: In serious or advanced cases of carpal tunnel syndrome, the physician may choose to perform carpal tunnel release surgery. This procedure is accomplished by slicing the carpal ligament in order to alleviate the pressure it is exerting on the patient’s median nerve. While this is normally an outpatient operation, the patient will require several weeks to sufficiently recover and return to full-time work status.
Unfortunately, these treatments can be expensive and may require lengthy rehabilitation. That means that, in addition to shouldering costly medical bills, you will also be unable to work for a significant period of time.
Consult a New Jersey Workers’ Compensation Attorney with a Proven Track Record
If you are suffering from the signs and symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome that you suspect are the result of your job-related duties, then it is essential that you obtain medical care and submit a workers’ compensation claim as soon as possible to maximize your chances of obtaining the financial support you need to adequately recover from your injury. Your health and the financial stability of you and your loved ones is simply too important to entrust your workers’ compensation claim with just any law firm.
Select Excellence. At Petro Cohen, our workers’ compensation attorneys have a proven track record of success with cases involving carpel tunnel or other repetitive stress injuries. We call these types of injuries WEAR and TEAR because, over time, the repetitive motion takes a toll on your body.
Led by Frank Petro, the workers’ compensation team of Stephen Matarazzo, Suzanne Holz Meola, Terri Hiles, Steve Lubcher, and Dan Rosenthal has over 100 years of experience in this specialized field, and will fight hard to get you the medical treatment you need and the compensation you deserve. Whether you are suffering from carpal tunnel syndrome or other types of WEAR and TEAR injuries, you can rest assured that our hard working attorneys will be by your side throughout the claim process, guiding you, answering questions, and seeing your case through to a successful outcome.
The workers’ compenstion attorneys at Petro Cohen offer free consultations and only get paid if we win your case. We have four convenient office locations in southern New Jersey to serve you, including Northfield, Cherry Hill, Cape May Court House, and Hamilton.