Doctors perform more than 230,000 surgical procedures each year for those diagnosed with carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS).
Almost one in four CTS patients cannot return to their former jobs. Can someone with job-related CTS file a claim for workers’ compensation benefits?
What it is
You may suspect you have CTS when you experience a tingling sensation in your hand or fingers. Gradually it will become a more painful condition resulting from pressure on the median nerve. That nerve runs through the carpal tunnel between the ligaments and bones in the palm of your hand. CTS occurs through repetition such as typing, sewing, assembly line work or the constant use of power tools.
When to file a claim
Workers’ compensation covers CTS. However, you must prove that it is a work-related injury rather than a condition that developed from another cause such as arthritis or diabetes. To begin the claim process, you must inform your supervisor about the injury. Since this is a progressive condition, you may find it difficult to explain when the injury first occurred or prove that it is affiliated with your job. The doctor who diagnoses your injury can help by confirming that your injury relates to the type of work you have been doing.
How to better your settlement chances
Filing a CTS claim for workers’ compensation can be a complicated undertaking, but an attorney can help defend your claim with the insurance company. If you are able to return to work, you will want to ensure that you have sufficient recovery time before doing so. You should also expect to receive the same benefits for a developing wear-and-tear condition as employees who experience one-time injuries.