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Will carpal tunnel force you to change your line of work?

On Behalf of | Nov 10, 2021 | Workers' Compensation

People in numerous lines of work could develop repetitive stress injuries. Doing the same tasks five days a week for multiple years can damage your musculature and connective tissue. Workers who develop such injuries may eventually need to claim workers’ compensation benefits.

Carpal tunnel syndrome is among the most common repetitive stress injuries that workers report in the United States. Although people often associate it with office work, like data entry, anyone who has to grip or frequently use their hands for repetitive tasks on the job could develop carpal tunnel syndrome.

Unfortunately, some people with carpal tunnel syndrome will discover that they can no longer continue the career they once enjoyed because of the pain and physical limitations caused by their condition.

Workers’ compensation protects those who have to end or change their careers

The North Carolina workers’ compensation protects employed Americans in numerous ways. The first is through providing comprehensive medical coverage. Workers who fall ill or get injured because of their work can count on benefits to pay for all of their necessary medical care.

The second is through disability benefits. If an injured or sickened employee requires time off of work for treatment or recovery, workers’ compensation disability benefits will help them replace some of their unearned wages. Workers can receive up to two-thirds of the income they lose because of their work-acquired medical conditions.

Workers with carpal tunnel may need short-term permanent disability benefits if they require a leave of absence for surgery. They may also need permanent total disability if the injury is so severe that it affects their grip strength and ability to work any job in the future. Even those who can go on to do less-skilled work could still qualify for permanent partial disability benefits if their new employment pays less than their previous line of work.

Long-term benefits can be harder to receive

Although connecting with short-term disability and medical coverage is often quick and easy, long-term disability benefits are often harder to secure. You may need more documentation, and a specialized medical exam may be necessary.

Knowing your rights and having the right support will increase your chances of success when seeking workers’ compensation benefits for a long-term injury like carpal tunnel syndrome.

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