Workers’ Compensation Benefits for Knee Injuries

st. louis workers compensation lawyer

Work-related knee injuries can be disruptive and debilitating. An injured employee may need help receiving their workers’ compensation benefits.

A knee injury resulting from a work-related accident may prevent employees from performing their responsibilities for a number of days or even weeks, depending on the degree and seriousness of the injury. An injured employee may wish to consult a Missouri workers’ compensation lawyer if they have suffered a knee injury while at work to facilitate the release of their workers’ compensation benefits.

What Is a Torn Meniscus Injury?

The meniscus is a flexible crescent-shaped disc supporting the knee. It is a protective cushion of cartilage supporting the knee joint. Each knee consists of two menisci. The first one is positioned along the outer part of the knee while the second is found along the inner edge of the knee. The two menisci maintain the stability of the knee by distributing weight of the body across the knee. If the meniscus is torn, the knee will not be able to function properly.

Symptoms of a Torn Meniscus

Individuals with a minor torn meniscus may feel some pain and swelling of the knee. The pain and swelling will disappear after two to three weeks. Moderate torn meniscus injuries can result in pain along the side or middle part of the knee. The swelling can worsen after two to three days. Although individuals with moderate torn meniscus injuries can still walk, they may feel some limitations when they try to bend their knees. The knee often stiffens, and a sharp pain is experienced when these individuals twist their knee or try to squat. Although the symptoms may dissipate within two to three weeks, they may be experienced again if the knee is twisted or overused. An untreated torn meniscus injury  may cause recurring pain along the knee area in the future.

Parts of the meniscus may enter the spaces in between the joints when an individual suffers from a severe torn meniscus injury. When this happens, the knee may have the tendency to catch, lock, or pop. The knee may be unstable or can collapse at anytime. It may also be difficult to straighten the knee. The knee may stiffen and swell up within two to three days after the injury. Torn meniscus injuries suffered while the employee was performing his or her job may be covered by the workers’ compensation system. Work-related torn meniscus injuries normally occur when the knee is strenuously twisted or turned too fast. The condition may also result from lifting heavy items while at work.

Medical Treatment and Recovery For a Torn Meniscus

Medical treatment and recovery from a work-related torn meniscus injury is determined by the degree and seriousness of the injury. In most cases, the RICE treatment is used in dealing with the injury.

  • Rest
  • Ice
  • Compression
  • Elevation

However, a surgical procedure or knee brace is required for treating severe torn meniscus injuries. It is also possible for the injury to cause the employee to become permanently disabled. Most types of torn meniscus injuries require the services of a physical therapist during the recovery period.

St. Louis Workers Compensation Lawyer

If you are enduring a torn meniscus injury resulting from a work-related injury, you may need help recovering compensation for medical expenses and lost wages. Contact The Law Office of James M. Hoffmann at (314) 361-4300.

Updated: September 10, 2014