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Repetitive motion injuries may qualify for workers’ comp

Workers’ compensation in Connecticut typically covers injuries caused as a result of repetitive trauma. Rotator cuff tears, tendonitis and bursitis claims often result from positions in warehouse and construction work. Repetitive strain injuries affecting the neck and shoulders, forearms, elbows, wrists and hands caused by assembly line or keyboard work may also qualify.

The severity of symptoms and an employee’s general health determine the treatment, from cold compresses and steroid injections to surgery. Healthline reports that wrist pain caused by carpal tunnel syndrome may range from occasional aches to numbness and constant intense pain, limiting the ability to perform job tasks. A doctor can assess the symptoms and determine if the pain is a result of job induced RSI. An evaluation may include a physical exam which tests range of motion, reflexes and strength in the affected area. An EMG can indicate whether there is nerve damage and an MRI or ultrasound can assess the tissue damage.

According to FindLaw, 20 percent of employees injured on the job suffer from repetitive motion type injuries. Over time, damage to tendons, muscles and nerves builds up. Continued recurrent movement aggravates the condition, making the pain impossible to ignore. To be covered by workers’ comp, a direct connection between this type of occupational disease and the duties required of an employee’s position must be shown.  

Even if the injury is the result of a previous job, a workers’ comp claim can be filed if duties required at the new position aggravate the condition. In addition to compensation for the surgery, lost wages, physical therapy and pain medication may also qualify for coverage.

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