Workplace injuries are unfortunately all too common, with roughly one in five Americans reporting that they have been hurt at work at some point in their career. According to the Workers’ Compensation Board of Indiana, five specific types of workplace injuries are particularly common.
The most common workplace injuries are those that affect the back. They are usually a result of a single event such as lifting a heavy object, or regularly being required to bend over. These injuries can be minor and may require only pain medication or physical therapy for treatment.
In other cases, however, they can be more severe and require surgery. Sometimes, a pre-existing condition may be aggravated by certain job duties, and workers’ compensation benefits may still be provided for this type of injury.
Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy Syndrome (RSD)
While not generally well-known, RSD is common in Indiana. Unfortunately, many doctors are not aware of the symptoms of RSD, and some patients will have to see multiple doctors before getting an official diagnosis.
RSD is also known as complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) and the symptoms can be intense, including extreme burning sensations, swelling of tissues, or being extremely sensitive to any kind of touch. The condition can be a result of many different injuries, including sprains or slip and falls. Physical therapy is often the most recommended treatment for RSD, but if left untreated it can leave a person living in chronic pain.
Tendonitis is a condition in which a tendon becomes inflamed, and it is often extremely painful. Tendonitis typically results when a worker performs a repetitive motion for a long period of time. This can cause the fibers in the tendon to tear.
The most common areas for tendonitis to occur are at in joints such as the elbows, wrists, knees, ankles, shoulders, and legs. Typically, the best treatment for tendonitis is resting the condition at home, but it can take four to six weeks for injured workers to fully heal.
A stress fracture is typically a small crack within a bone, but it can also be severe bruising of a bone. These fractures or bruises most often occur when a muscle has been overused and can no longer absorb added shocks due to being overworked. When this happens, the muscle will transfer the shock or stress to the bone, which can cause the bone to break or bruise.
Like tendonitis, the best treatment for stress fractures is to get plenty of rest and to stop using the muscle and bone that is affected. But recovering from stress fractures can take even longer than recovering from stress fractures, from six to eight weeks.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS)
While CTS is not quite as common an injury in other states, in Indiana it makes the top five. CTS is a condition that affects the nerves in the wrist only. When these nerves are continuously squeezed tightly together, it can cause a numbing, burning, or tingling sensation in the fingers and hand.
As the condition worsens, a person suffering from it may be unable to hold onto objects or they may feel weakness in their hands. Without treatment, the weakness may become more intense and the person may start to feel extreme pain.
An Indiana Workers’ Compensation Attorney Could Work To Protect You
Employees in Indiana can apply for workers’ compensation whenever they get hurt at work, but getting benefits can sometimes be difficult, especially for conditions like RSD that may be difficult to diagnose. Any time a person suffers an injury while on the job, they should speak to an Indiana workers’ compensation lawyer as soon as possible. A qualified attorney could take on the task of workers’ compensation paperwork and deal with the insurance company on the injured employee’s behalf.