Workers Comp Doctor Contradicts His Own Diagnosis and Prognosis...
by Daniel (Pueblo, CO)
I was injured on the job. First the workers compensation doctor said I had no permanent impairment, then he listed permanent restrictions: no lifting, repetitive lifting or carrying anything over 10 lbs. Then the doctor said no maintenance care was required after my Maximum Medical Improvement (MMI), but he specified that I return from maintenance visit in 2-3 months.
This was all from an umbilical hernia surgery. During the surgery one of the nerves in my belly button was either cut or damaged. The result was a badly irritated nerve that hurts and throbs all day long. The doctor tried steroid injections with no effect.
Now I'm wondering what happens with my workers comp benefits since the doctor is contradicting himself with regards to my permanent injuries and future treatment? Thanks.
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ANSWER for "Workers Comp Doctor Contradicts His Own Diagnosis and Prognosis...":
Daniel (Pueblo, Colorado):
Your Doctor will eventually have to decide whether your umbilical cord hernia is permanent or temporary. Although umbilical hernias are usually not life threatening, it is important to know how serious yours is.
If the doctor misdiagnosed your umbilical cord injury and tells the Workers Compensation representative you are able to lift more weight than is appropriate for the degree of your umbilical cord injury, the hernia may worsen and unnecessarily protrude more than it has already.
If you re not satisfied with this doctor, you an always ask to see another doctor. In the State of Colorado, as in most other states which carry Workmans Compensation insurance, you have a right to ask to see another employer Workers Compensation approved doctor.
Talk with the Workmans Comp representative. Tell her your original doctor’s prognosis is ambiguous. The representative can easily pick up the phone to ask the doctor to clarify her diagnosis and prognosis. At this time the amount of Workmans Compensation benefits you are receiving is a way you can tell whether the doctor’s prognosis for you is an either permanent or temporary impairment.
If you haven’t already done so, you may have to sign a Medical Release Form. The HIPAA laws are quite strict when it comes to the release of medical records.
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.
The accuracy of information provided on this site is not guaranteed. It is generic information for informal purposes only. It is NOT formal legal advice. Your use of this site does NOT create an attorney-client relationship. Before relying on any information found in this site you should consult with a licensed attorney in your state. If you are currently represented by an attorney, you should strictly abide by his/her counsel.