What is Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?
January 28, 2020
With millions of people using computer keyboards for hours every workday, many workers end up with Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS). Considered a repetitive stress injury, CTS is a nerve disorder that affects the wrist. Not only is it seen in people who work with computers all day, it is common in employees who use cash registers, are on assembly lines, or whose work involves press, slicing, or pushing objects. It is also possible for work-related accidents to cause CTS, especially when there are fractured or broken bones in the hands.
The carpal tunnel is a narrow passageway lined by small bones in the wrist, and the transverse carpal ligament curves over them to protect the median nerve. The median is one of the hand’s key nerves, and it extends to the index, middle, and ring fingers, as well as the thumb. When it experiences constant pressure, the carpal tunnel can become compressed, which causes swelling of the tendons and nerves. This leads to weakness, numbness, and pain in the wrist and hand.
Others may experience pain going up the arm into the shoulder, a loss of dexterity in the fingers, the frequent dropping of objects, and a tingling or burning sensation in the fingers. Medical conditions, such as diabetes, pregnancy, and arthritis, can cause or worsen the symptoms, and the person’s weight, age, and gender can also be contributing factors.
Making a Workers’ Compensation Claim
Most states, including Pennsylvania, require workers’ compensation coverage for employees. When CTS is caused by work-related tasks, employees may be entitled to benefits with no regard to fault. Most states recognize CTS as a compensable medical injury, and employees may be able to receive benefits for lost wages and medical expenses.
However, it is not uncommon for providers to challenge CTS claims. In these cases, employees must prove that their injury was job-related. The employer’s insurance company may argue that the employee’s condition was caused by other activities, such as a hobby or second job, or they could claim that the employee’s diabetes or other health issues led to it.
Additional Compensation Options
Some individuals choose to pursue legal claims through their Social Security disability benefits. To do so, one must have all their medical records and employment information from the previous 15 years, including all hospital and doctor visits. Applications can be completed in person, on the phone, and online.
Employees also have the option of initiating personal injury lawsuits for CTS, but there needs to be clear, convincing evidence that the injury was work-related. In complicated workers’ compensation cases and lawsuits like these, it may be best to contact a skilled workers’ compensation lawyer.
Philadelphia Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at Larry Pitt & Associates, P.C. Help Workers Suffering from Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
If you experienced Carpal Tunnel Syndrome at work, the Philadelphia workers’ compensation lawyers at Larry Pitt & Associates, P.C. can help. We will fight for the compensation you rightfully deserve. For a free consultation, complete our online form or call us at 888-PITT-LAW.
Located in Philadelphia, Bensalem, Lansdowne, and Reading, we represent injured workers in Berks County, Bucks County, Chester County, Delaware County, Montgomery County, Philadelphia County, and throughout Pennsylvania, including those in the communities of Abington, Ambler, Ardmore, Bala Cynwyd, Bensalem, Clifton Heights, Crum Lynne, Darby, Downingtown, Doylestown, Drexel Hill, Essington, Folcroft, Glenolden, Haverford, Havertown, Holmes, Kutztown, Lansdowne, Media, Merion Station, Morton, Narberth, Norristown, Norwood, Philadelphia, Prospect Park, Quakertown, Reading, Roxborough, Sharon Hill, Upper Darby, West Chester, and Wynnewood.