The Risk of Repetitive Motion in the Workplace

In the United States repetitive motion injuries are one of the leading injuries named in workers compensation claims.

repetitive-motion-work-injuryThere is a myth that in order to receive workman’s compensation benefits, the cause of your injury must be the result of a single event. For example, a cable installer falling off of a ladder or a waiter slipping on an ice cube. The truth is, many work place injuries are a result of prolonged exposure, either to a dangerous substance or chemical or to repeating the same motion over and over throughout your work day. There does not have to be fault in a workers’ compensation case, just proof that the injury is a direct result of your job. If you are being treated for a disease or condition that may have been caused by a normal part of your work duties, contact a workers compensation attorney to learn whether or not you qualify for benefits.

Repetitive Motion Injuries

In the United States repetitive motion injuries are one of the leading injuries named in workers compensation claims. Most are often associated with carpal tunnel syndrome, repetitive motion injuries can also include bursitis and tendinitis. Bursitis is inflammation of the cushions protecting your joints. It develops over time, usually by placing direct pressure on the affected joint for long periods of time. Workers such as gardeners who spend a lot of time on their knees are susceptible to developing bursitis in the knee joint. Tendinitis is an inflammation of the tendons that connect the muscle to bone. Since tendons are responsible for pulling the muscle that controls the bone, injury to them is most often caused by repeating the same action over and over. Office workers who spend long periods of time typing on a keyboard are susceptible to developing tendinitis in their wrists. In fact, for every 100,000 full time worker 1.1 will develop tendinitis.

Tendinitis of the elbow is known as epicondilitis or more commonly, tennis elbow as it is seen primarily in tennis players. A Missouri bus driver went to his physician complaining of elbow pain and initially was diagnosed with epicondilitis. The condition was worsened by the development of bone spurs at the joint which required surgery to remove. Bone spurs occur in about 20% of tendinitis cases. The employers insurance denied the case so the Missouri workers compensation attorney brought in experts to show how using the stick shift caused the condition and that it is now a permanent disability. The defense decided to settle before trial.

Seek Legal Advice

If an action related to your job is suspected to be the cause of your disease or condition contact a Missouri workers compensation lawyer right away. Remember, you typically have 30 days after the initial diagnosis to report it to your employer. Failing to do so may put receiving any workers compensation benefits at risk. Your attorney can help you draw up the written notice which must include your name and address, the date of diagnosis and the nature of your injury, particularly how it relates to your work.

Workers’ compensation benefits are available to anyone who requires medical care as a result of their employment, not just for those who have an accident on the job. There is no need to prove negligence. If you have recently been diagnosed with a disease or condition commonly found to be work related, contact St. Louis workers compensation attorney James M. Hoffmann.

Call (314) 361-4300 to schedule a free consultation.


photo credit: SidewaysSarah