When most people in Illinois think of workers’ compensation benefits, they usually imagine some kind of work accident that resulted in an employee becoming injured. However, as a workers comp lawyer Wheaton, IL clients recommend can explain, there are also health conditions and illnesses that can develop over time due to an employee’s job duties. In these situations, the employee usually qualifies for the same worker’s compensation benefits as a worker who suffered a fall or other type of job-related injury.
One of the most common of these conditions is carpal tunnel syndrome. Carpal tunnel develops in a person’s hand and wrist. It happens when the median nerve, which is one of the major nerves that run through the hand, becomes compressed or stretched, which damages the nerve. This type of injury is classified as a progressive injury, which means that it could become worse over time, and could eventually cause permanent nerve damage if the condition is not treated.
In most situations, the worker’s symptoms start out gradually and they may not even realize that anything is wrong at first. But over time, the condition become worse. Some of the signs of carpal tunnel syndrome include:
- Burning sensation
- Hand weakness
- Tingling (or pain) that travels from the forearm up to the shoulder
Carpal tunnel develops because the individual is repeating the same motion over and over again, day in and day out. This repetitive motion causes trauma to the nerve and the symptoms develop.
Any worker who has a job that requires repetitive motion runs the risk of developing carpal tunnel syndrome. Each Wheaton, IL workers comp lawyer from our firm has represented many clients with carpal tunnel syndrome, from all different types of occupations. Some of the common work duties that trigger carpal tunnel include:
- Assembly line work
- Cleaning and scrubbing
- Cutting hair
- Food preparation
- Typing or keying on a computer or other electronic device
Qualifying for Workers’ Comp
In Illinois, employees who develop carpal tunnel syndrome because of their job duties qualify for workers’ compensation benefits. The Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission considers the condition a valid injury which leaves a worker unable to work or work with doctor-imposed restrictions.
Since the condition affects each person differently, there is no way to predict how long a person with carpal tunnel may be unable to perform their job duties. In milder cases, the person may be able to go back to their job after a couple of months of physical therapy. In other cases, the person may need surgery and still will not be able to go back to their occupation. In these situations, the worker may qualify for permanent benefits because the damage to their nerves is permanent.
Illinois Workers Comp Law Firm
If you are suffering from carpal tunnel or other repetitive motion condition that has been a result of your job, contact Therman Law Offices, LTD to schedule a free consultation with a workers comp lawyer Wheaton, IL. We’ll help get you the benefits you deserve.