Do I have to file a second claim if I have complications from a ligament graft?

by A

I had a tear in my ulnar collateral ligament of my right thumb. I was told that it was not broken for three months before I was allowed to go in for an MRI, which showed the ligament tear.

Since I had to wait so long, the doctor told me that I needed to have the ligament reconstructed and they needed to take the Longus palmeris ligament out of my left arm (I didn't have the extra ligament in my right arm, which would have been ideal for the situation).

The left arm graft has caused a lot of issues. It ended up getting infected and now has a hypertrophic scar with positive tenils. I feel like there is some type of nerve compression issue. It causes a lot of pain. Everyone wants to ignore the wrist and just focus on the thumb reconstruction.

Do I need to file a separate claim for the wrist so that they will at least acknowledge it? The adjuster called me to close out my claim and did not acknowledge the wrist issue until I brought it up, but told me that it is all part of the same claim. I have trouble believing her! How can I make sure this gets taken care of?

Visitor Question:
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ANSWER for "Do I have to file a second claim if I have complications from a ligament graft?":


You should not have to file a separate claim for your left arm/wrist injury.

Speak with your primary treating physician. Have her verify your wrist injury is directly related to the injury to your thumb. Once that is accomplished, contact the workers' comp insurance representative and tell her you want the insurance company to pay for the required treatment. If the adjuster refuses, then you may have to file a separate claim.

The controlling issue is the relationship between the thumb injury and the left arm/wrist injury. You refer to the left arm and then the left wrist. The presumption is you are talking about the same thing.

There should not be any justifiable reason for your left arm/wrist injury claim to be denied. If the claims adjuster refuses to pay for the treatment you require, seek the advice and counsel of a workers' comp attorney. Most will not charge for initial office consultation. Bring along your medical records, receipts for out of pocket expenses, and loss wage verification.

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,

Judge Calisi

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