Chronic back injuries after 28 years as a concrete laborer...
(Mazomanie, WI, USA)
I have been diagnosed with spinal stenosis, DDD radiculopathy of the lumbosacral region, and have chronic pain. I've been a concrete laborer for the same company for 28 years. I'm 50 years old.
The back problems started to effect my ability to work in May of 2014. I had injections in my back in July, and also did a physical therapy program for 6 weeks, with little to no improvement. I've since had another round of injections in my back.
I'm certain the back problems are from my job. I lift steel forms all day long, ranging from 50 to 100 lbs, and I'm bent over doing this 90 percent of the time (curb and gutter, sidewalk forming, and pouring).
My question is, is this a pre-existing condition that should be covered by workers' compensation? How do I prove that these problems are actually from my work? Thank you.
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ANSWER for "Chronic back injuries after 28 years as a concrete laborer...":
Tom (Mazomanie, WI, USA):
The most common causes of Spinal Stenosis are age-related changes including a bulging or collapsed disc, increase in the size of your bones and joints, formation of bone spurs, and hardening or thickening of the ligaments that help support your spine.
Spinal Stenosis can be aggravated by repetitive actions, especially when those actions include lifting extraordinary amounts of weight.
Talk to your company's workers' compensation representative. You have every right to ask for a medical opinion. From the facts you present, it's likely that a thorough medical examination will include a diagnosis of advanced Spinal Stenosis brought on by your work duties.
With such a medical opinion you should be entitled to workers' comp benefits. Those benefits may be proportionate to the doctor's diagnosis of the condition exclusively from age, and that percentage brought on by your work duties.
Moreover, you may be entitled to disability payments due to your inability to perform your work duties due to your medical condition.
The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.
Best of luck,
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