Doctor didn't even look at my injured knee...
I slipped at work going down the stairs. I didn't fall but in an effort not to fall, I twisted all of my weight onto one knee. As a result I have a small tear in my meniscus in my right knee. I have been seeing a Dr and physical therapist since then. The Dr has me on light duty at work.
While I was at work on Dec. 23, I turned in a chair I was seated in and I felt a burning in my knee like I had re-injured it. I called my workers comp. nurse who advised me to call my Dr. and let him know what happened. I did and his PA told me to just see how it did and call them back in a few days if the pain continued.
Today, Dec. 27, as I was going down the steps at home my knee "caught" as it sometimes does since the initial accident. I lost my balance and fell down the steps. I felt and heard something pop in my knee and immediately was in a lot of pain. So I called the Dr and was told that someone would be in touch with me this afternoon. I then called my workers comp. nurse to let her know. She called the Dr and got him to see me this morning.
I went to the Dr and he did not even look at my knee. He told me he did not have a magic bullet to fix it, told me it was because I had some arthritis and walked out. His nurse came back in and told me they would have a note for me up front and he called in a prescription for me. The prescription was for the same thing he had previously given me which does nothing for my pain.
So I am back at home now in a lot of pain and know nothing more than my knee hurts. I'm afraid that something could have been injured even more. But as I said, he didn't look at it or ask any questions about it, so I know absolutely nothing. Do I need to seek legal help? What can I do to get my knee properly treated? Thank you.
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ANSWER for "Doctor didn't even look at my injured knee...":
Audrey (Clarkton, NC):
Before seeking legal help, contact the workers compensation claims adjuster or nurse and tell them you are nor satisfied with your present doctor. Explain why. You have a right to ask to be seen by a second doctor as long as he or she is on the insurance company’s approved list.
After examining you, if the new doctor renders the same diagnosis and prognosis as the first doctor, and you are still not satisfied, you may want to seek legal counsel. If an attorney accepts your claim, he or she may refer you to a doctor outside of the company’s approved list. Normally, doctors who work with workers comp attorneys are more inclined to be open-minded about a client’s injury.
There is another scenario...
If both company-approved doctors render the same diagnosis and prognosis, they may be correct, and your pain and discomfort may not be as serious as you believe it is. That’s a delicate subject, but certainly one which is reasonable to assert under the circumstances.
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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