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  • Writer's pictureJohn Larrimer

A Guide to Workers' Comp for Repetitive Strain Injuries

Although tragic accidents and unexpected events are often the cause of work-related injuries, it's not the only reason they occur. Many people don't realize that harm caused by repeated strain may also qualify for workers' compensation benefits.


However, the truth is that claims involving repetitive strain aren't always easy to prove. Fortunately, a reliable attorney can help victims obtain the benefits they are rightly due. Larrimer & Larrimer LLC is committed to helping workers with such cases and will stop at nothing to secure a favorable outcome. They can also help with Workers' Comp for toxic exposures.


This article will shed some light on repetitive stress injuries to offer guidance to sufferers. Larrimer & Larrimer has more information about Workers' Comp for electrocution injuries as well.


 What Is a Repetitive Strain Injury?

 What Is a Repetitive Strain Injury?


A repetitive stress injury (RSI) is one that involves strain on the musculoskeletal system, which is responsible for supporting the body and facilitating movement. The condition is commonly experienced by professional athletes, but office workers may also be victims of overuse injuries.


When a person repeats a movement over and over, exerts too much force on their muscles, or remains in certain positions (such as sitting or standing) for extended periods, they reduce the musculoskeletal system's ability to recover.


Repeating the same activity over and over causes inflammation and trauma to the tissues involved, impairing their typical functioning and structure.


This may eventually cause symptoms such as:


  • Tingling 

  • Pain

  • Weakness  

  • Reduced range of motion

  • Stiffness

  • Numbness


If left untreated, repetitive strain injuries can worsen and result in chronic pain and impairment that can make it difficult for a person to carry out daily duties and work-related activities.


How Does a Repetitive Strain Injury Occur?


As described above, repeating a movement is what causes RSIs. In the workplace, there are a variety of scenarios where this can happen.


Poor Ergonomics in the Office

These injuries typically occur when employees do not have an ergonomic work setup. The lack of adequate lumbar support, for example, can result in back pain, while a strain of the wrist joint can cause carpal tunnel syndrome.


Insufficient Breaks

Another common reason for RSI is inadequate breaks. Taking time throughout the day to rest the muscles and tendons provides them an opportunity to recover.


Underlying Health Conditions

If a worker has an underlying condition, they could be more susceptible to repetitive motion injuries than others. Conditions such as autoimmune disorders, joint instability, musculoskeletal disorders, nerve problems, and metabolic issues can contribute to the severity or onset of an RSI.


Common Repetitive Stress Injuries


There are a number of conditions that may arise because of repeated motions. The injury a person is left with will typically depend on the type of movement they conduct. Here is an overview of some of the most common disorders caused by repetitive strain:


  • Carpal tunnel syndrome. Repeated hand movements can result in the compression of the median nerve, which passes through the wrist joint.

  • Tendonitis. This condition involves the inflammation of tendons, which is a type of tissue that connects muscles to bones.

  • Tennis elbow. When there is repeated strain on the tendons in the elbow joints, this disorder may occur.

  • Trigger finger. This condition involves the overuse of a flexor tendon in the hand, causing the affected finger to be straightened or bent.


Are Repetitive Strain Injuries Eligible for Workers' Compensation Benefits?


Repetitive motion injuries are considered a form of occupational illness under Ohio workers' compensation legislation. This means that employees who suffer from an RSI may qualify for benefits in the same way that a person who was injured in a catastrophic workplace accident might. 


However, it's important to remember that certain criteria will apply, so claimants must ensure that their claim ticks these boxes:


  • The injury or condition must have been diagnosed by a physician.

  • Exposure to risk factors at work is what caused the condition.

  • Work conditions pose a greater hazard to the victim than other members of the public.

The Benefits Available to Victims

Those who satisfy the criteria mentioned above may qualify for a number of benefits. This includes the following:


Income Loss Benefits

Because a repetitive motion injury can force the sufferer to seek medical treatment and spend time away from work, a workers' compensation claim can be filed to protect them from income loss.


Medical Benefits

Repetitive motions can result in a number of serious injuries that will need medical intervention. The good news is that most office or construction workers who have suffered such harm can claim the cost of their treatment, offering much-needed financial relief.


Rehabilitation

A change in occupation or the duties that an employee may perform is necessary because of medical restrictions. Workers' comp benefits may cover the cost of the person's training for a new position.


How Long Do Victims Have to File a Claim?


Sufferers generally have two years from the date they started to experience the injury. Since repetitive motion disorders are not as straightforward as other types of work-related injuries, one of these three dates will apply:


  1. The two-year deadline will start from the date the person first received treatment,

  2. When they were first diagnosed with the condition, or

  3. The date from which they had to leave their job because of the RSI.


However, sufferers are advised to get the ball rolling as quickly as possible to ensure that they have a good shot at filing a successful claim.


Victims Can Receive Workers' Compensation Benefits with the Help of an Experienced Attorney

Victims Can Receive Workers' Compensation Benefits with the Help of an Experienced Attorney


Repetitive motion injuries can have serious consequences for the injured employee. Not only do they impair a worker's ability to perform their daily tasks, but they can also put them under serious financial strain because of lost wages and mounting medical bills. Skilled workers compensation lawyers in Columbus can help with navigating these situations.


The good news is that workers' comp for repetitive strain injuries can offer much-needed relief. However, claiming compensation isn't a walk in the park, and there are stringent criteria that candidates must meet.


Fortunately, the attorneys with Larrimer & Larrimer, LLC have years of experience with such claims and can give injured workers a fighting chance at compensation.


To learn more or schedule a consultation with one of our legal representatives, call us today!

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