Carpal tunnel, or carpal tunnel syndrome, is a repetitive stress injury that can leave you too hurt to work or do the simple things you do every day.
What Are the Symptoms of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?
Symptoms of carpal tunnel include:
- Pain in your arm
- Tingling sensations in parts of your hand
- Loss of sensation in parts of your hand
- Weakness in your hand, especially when you attempt to do your work or carry out tasks like holding objects
- Thickening or swelling of your wrist
Who is at higher risk for carpal tunnel syndrome?
Certain professions may be at a higher risk for developing carpal tunnel syndrome, including:
- Assembly line workers
- Research assistants
- Construction workers
What Are the Risks or Causes of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?
Some activities may contribute to developing carpal tunnels syndrome, including:
- Repeated motions that put a strain on your wrist
- Repetitive typing or mouse use
- Using power tools or devices that vibrate intensely
Carpal tunnel syndrome could be a result of:
- Having diabetes, elevated blood pressure, arthritis, or some autoimmune disease
- Having a condition that causes a buildup of fluid in your wrist
- And injury to your wrist
If you’re feeling pain in your wrist, arm, hand or have been diagnosed with carpal tunnel syndrome by a doctor, workers’ comp may cover carpal tunnel related costs.
Does workers’ comp cover carpal tunnel?
Most people think that you have to have a life-altering injury to get workers’ compensation benefits. But the reality is a large percentage of workers’ compensation claims are for injuries that develop gradually because of an activity that’s part of a person’s everyday job. One example is carpal tunnel syndrome, a type of repetitive stress injury that affects a wide variety of workers, including assembly line workers and anyone who uses a computer daily.
Workers’ compensation benefits are designed to cover the medical bills, income loss, and future medical expenses that a worker incurs because of an on-the-job injury. The key to any workers’ comp claim is establishing that the injury actually happened on the job. With some injuries, such as slips, trips and falls, it’s pretty obvious. But with repetitive stress injuries like carpal tunnel syndrome, detailed information is required to prove that the injury stems from work.
That’s why it’s so important to talk to a workers’ comp lawyer. Without first-hand knowledge of workers’ comp laws, it’s too easy for injured workers to make the kind of mistakes that result in a denied claim. It never hurts to talk to a lawyer, even if you’re not sure you have a case.
Why You Need a Lawyer if You Have Carpal Tunnel
Once you’re diagnosed with carpal tunnel due to a repetitive motion you perform at work, you only have 30 days to file a workers’ compensation claim or you could lose your right to receive workers’ compensation benefits. Waiting to file your injury claim can cause your carpal tunnel injury to get worse. A workers’ comp attorney can answer questions like “does workers’ comp cover carpal tunnel,” help prevent you from getting fired because of your injury, help get your doctor bills paid, and help maximize the workers’ comp benefits you receive.
A lawyer can also help you connect with medical experts who can examine your symptoms, determine the extent of your injuries, and advise when and whether you are fit to return to work. This can be a critical part of your claim, since the vast majority of workers’ comp claims are denied due to insufficient evidence. By working with a lawyer, he or she can help ensure that you have all the proper documentation and expert support required to get the benefits you need.
What Compensation is Available?
If you’ve experienced a repetitive motion work injury such as carpal tunnel, a workers’ compensation lawyer could help you get:
- All the workers’ compensation benefits you’re entitled to
- Monetary compensation to cover your doctor and medical bills
- Payments for up to 104 weeks of temporary disability
- Payments for up to 240 weeks of disability for severe injuries
- Total disability benefits
A workers’ compensation attorney will be your ally throughout the entire workers’ compensation process.
NOTE: Making a false or fraudulent workers’ compensation claim is a felony subject to up to 5 years in prison or a fine of up to $50,000 or double the value of the fraud, whichever is greater, or by both imprisonment and fine.