Repetitive Stress Injuries and Georgia Worker’s Compensation
Georgia Workers' Compensation Lawyers Discuss Repetitive Stress Injuries
Georgia employees might recognize that they have a right to pursue a workers' compensation claim for medical care and partial wage replacement when they suffer an on-the-job injury. While the process might seem straightforward, there are many procedural, evidentiary, and substantive complications that can disrupt, compromise, or completely derail a claim. While most people think of workplace injuries as involving the consequences of a sudden mishap such as a motor vehicle collision, fall from a scaffolding, or malfunction of heavy equipment, many job-related injuries are not so immediate and clear. When a person suffers a broken arm in a fall, the cause of injury and the adverse health impacts frequently are fairly apparent. However, injuries that occur over a protracted period pose a more significant challenge when pursuing a workers' compensation claim.
Understanding Repetitive Stress Injuries
While some people might discount the severity and debilitating nature of a repetitive stress injury (RSI), these injuries can be extremely serious and lead to permanent disability. An RSI is caused by repetitive motion or exposure to heavy vibration in the workplace. If your employer tasks you with engaging in jobs involving a fixed posture or awkward motions for a prolonged period without adequate breaks, this can result in an RSI. Many workplace activities in a broad spectrum of industries promote repetitive motion injuries, including heavy computer work, assembly line jobs, food preparation, commercial truck driving, heavy machinery use, road work, poultry processing, janitorial and cleaning jobs, carpentry work, typing, and others.
Some types of movements tend to result in an RSI, such as jobs that require employees to maintain an awkward posture. In other words, tasks that entail a body remaining in a different position from a natural posture can cause an RSI, such as stooping, side-to-side movement, backward flexing of the wrist, twisting, reaching up above shoulder level, and bending. Further, employees who engage in the continuous use of the same muscles face an increased risk, such as twisting one's neck to view a poorly positioned computer monitor or constant standing in one spot.
How Repetitive Tasks Promote Chronic Pain and Long-Term Disability
The human body is not well suited to monotonous assembly line or desk tasks. The muscles and joints of the body need varied movement to promote good health. Contorting the body in atypical positions or repeatedly performing the same movements can cause stress that accumulates over time, resulting in debilitating injuries. The development of many jobs that require employees to remain in uncomfortable positions for most or all of the work day has spawned an increase in RSI claims. When workers are stooped over computers for eight hours a day, they often suffer from back problems, carpal tunnel syndrome, neck injuries, and other RSIs. Similarly, continuous repetitive motion in manufacturing plants can result in tendon and muscle issues that frequently cause chronic joint pain.
Put Our Law Firm's Over 32 Years of Legal Experience to Work For You!
If you have have experienced an injury without any precise and obvious cause, but believe it may be an RSI sustained on the job, you may be entitled to workers' compensation benefits. Our Atlanta workers' compensation lawyers have successfully represented many injured employees who have suffered RSIs. Our law firm has been representing those who suffer serious injuries throughout Georgia and in the Southeast for over thirty-two years, including but not limited to Albany, Athens, Atlanta, Augusta, Columbus, Gainesville, Macon, Marietta, Rome, Roswell, Savannah, Smyrna, Valdosta, Warner Robins and all smaller cities and rural areas in the state.
No matter where you are located, the attorneys of Montlick and Associates, Attorneys at Law, are just a phone call away, and we will even come to you. Call us 24 hours a day/7 days a week for your Free Consultation at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333). You can also visit us online at www.montlick.com and use our Free Case Evaluation Form or 24-hour Live Online Chat.