Hand It Over: Workers' Compensation And Wrist Injuries

When you think about it, there are very few jobs that do not depend on the use of your hands and wrists, but some are worse than others. Jobs like keyboarding, small assembly work, using a sewing machine, and others rely on the nearly constant use of that area of the body. Over-use of this delicate area can eventually lead to pain and incapacity so read on to learn more.

A particular type of wrist injury

You may associate workers' comp injuries with those that happen suddenly, but this form of coverage provided by your employer also covers another class of injury. This type of injury to the wrist may fall into the repetitive stress injury category, which covers injuries that occur gradually through repeated use without time for healing between injury. If your job demands it, then you must make the motions required and soon permanent damage could occur to your wrist. This may be a particular type of wrist injury known as carpal tunnel syndrome.

What is carpal tunnel syndrome?

Your wrist contains a very narrow tunnel that holds nerves and constant motion or pressure on that area can produce some serious problems that may make it impossible for you to do your job. You might be shocked at how often you use your wrists and fingers not just at work but in day-to-day life, and when this area becomes inflamed, you will feel pain and more. Watch out for these common symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome:

  • Sharp pain in the wrist, hand, and finger area
  • Numbness and tingling
  • Pain that shoots up the arm
  • A feeling of swelling
  • Burning and itching

Getting treatment and your job

Since the primary first-line treatment of carpal tunnel syndrome is rest, you may find yourself unable to work at your job. Unfortunately, almost all of the treatments for this condition are based on the understanding that you can never work at a position that puts stress on your wrist again. There are, however, treatments and surgery that can help attain some use of your wrist again. The surgery involves actually severing the nerve in the tunnel and then enlarging the space it once occupied, and it has varying rates of success.

Take these steps to get coverage:

1. While this disorder becomes more obvious in a gradual manner, you must inform your supervisor as soon as you have a doctor's diagnosis.

2. Make sure to let your doctor know that your injury is work-related.

3. Make sure a claim is filed with your employer's workers' comp carrier.

4. If you have a permanent injury to your wrist, you may be entitled to both a lump sum payment and vocational services that could retrain you for a different job.

These types of injuries can be more difficult to prove and get benefits for so speak to a workers' comp attorney if you notice problems with your claim or your employer. For more information, contact a law office like Bennett  Law Firm PC.