Draft: The Importance Of Seeking Medical Treatment After Being Injured
Last updated Monday, May 3rd, 2021
A key aspect of personal injury cases is the extent and types of injuries the victim suffered. In order to prove the extent of injuries, specifically due to the accident, both the plaintiff and defendant will rely upon the victim’s medical records. This is why seeking medical treatment straight away is so important.
Therefore, medical records documenting the injuries sustained at the time of the accident are critical. Otherwise, the case comes down to the victim’s word against the defendant’s, as to whether they were truly negligent.
A Doctor’s Report Is Vital In Injury Compensation Cases
Far too often after an accident, the person who was not responsible will think their injuries are not sufficient to warrant a trip to a doctor. However, refusing medical treatment or not promptly seeking it, typically within 24 hours after an accident, can make it extremely difficult for a lawyer to prove their client was injured as the result of the negligence of the other party.
Unfortunately, failing to promptly receive medical attention following an accident typically results in the inability to prove and therefore demand, monetary compensation for medical bills and possibly lost compensation.
In addition, sometimes injuries do not always appear initially after an accident due to heightened adrenaline levels. So, while you might think you’re fine, you could potentially be injured. Further, if your injuries are more extensive than you initially believed, you might require ongoing medical care. It is for these reasons it is ALWAYS in your best interest to seek medical treatment after an accident.
What Is Carpal Tunnel Syndrome And What Are The Likely Causes?
Carpal tunnel syndrome is common, affecting three to six percent of adults in the U.S. according to the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP). People who perform a repetitive motion on the job such as typing or performing the same task again and again on an assembly line may eventually develop a carpal tunnel injury. Trauma or injury to the wrist can also lead to the condition.
Jobs that can lead to carpal tunnel include:
- Data entry or otherwise working on a computer
- Playing a musical instrument
- Agricultural work
Carpal tunnel syndrome typically develops gradually over time, yet the symptoms can eventually make it difficult or impossible to work.
Treatments may include:
- Resting the hands and arms frequently
- Wearing a splint/arm brace
- Medications such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) to reduce pain
- Corticosteroid injections to reduce swelling and pain
If these treatments don’t work, surgery may be necessary. Surgery is expensive and there could be significant recovery time.
If you have been diagnosed with carpal tunnel syndrome and believe it is related to repetitive motions performed on the job, you may be able to get medical treatment and compensation under workers’ compensation, even if you have left the job that caused the condition. Confirmation by a doctor that your symptoms are directly related to the job in question will strengthen your claim.
Are You At Risk For A Repetitive Stress Injury?
A repetitive stress injury (RSI) is a type of bodily injury that occurs from performing the same tasks or movements repetitiously over a period of time. RSIs are not new. They first started occurring in the early 1900s in manufacturing employees as well as in telegraph operators.
With the introduction of the personal computer in the 1980s, RSIs began to grow in office environments. Some of the more common RSIs most people are aware of are carpal tunnel syndrome, tendonitis, and bursitis.
The Risks Of Repetitive Stress Injury
If your job involves performing the same movements over and over, you could potentially be at risk for an RSI. Fortunately, the majority of repetitive injuries are covered under worker’s compensation. This is as long as the injury is work-related. Plus, the person who sustained the RSI has to be legally employed at the time of the injury.
For instance, if you experience an RSI as a result of your daily lunchtime workouts, it would not normally be covered under worker’s compensation. On the other hand, if you developed sharp, burning sensations, shooting pain, or other signs of RSI in your shoulders from constantly lifting and moving boxes as part of your job, then it’s very likely covered under worker’s compensation.
In order to ensure forms and documents are completed correctly, you might want to seek representation from a qualified worker’s comp lawyer when filing a claim. Your attorney will also be available to address any issues that might arise with your employer as a result of your worker’s compensation claim.
Know The Facts About Shoulder Impingement Accident Injuries
Shoulder impingement injuries are one of the more common injuries auto accident victims suffer. Moreover, the condition is painful and limits mobility. An experienced personal injury attorney can help victims receive the compensation they need. Especially for medical treatment, lost work, and other related expenses resulting from these injuries.
This condition happens when the front edge of the shoulder blade impinges on the rotator cuff when someone raises his or her arm. Furthermore, the condition frequently occurs after auto accidents that cause whiplash related injuries.
Shoulder impingement causes pain and mobility loss. For athletes, construction workers, manufacturing plant workers, hairstylists, hygienists, and anyone who relies on their body to earn a living, these injuries can cut short their careers. Physicians treat the condition with a range of options including non-steroid anti-inflammatory medicine, physical therapy, and, in severe cases, surgery.
Therefore, accident victims suffering from shoulder impingement should seek the advice of a personal injury lawyer. A personal injury attorney can pursue compensation from the responsible party. This will help pay for the victim’s therapy, lost wages, and other related costs.
How To Prove Lost Wages In A Personal Injury Case
Proving lost wages in a personal injury case requires having certain documentation and records to present to the court through your personal injury lawyer. The types of documentation required depend upon the nature of the accidents you experienced, the injuries you incurred, and the specifics of your inability to work.
Even if you work part-time or are self-employed, you could be entitled to lost wage recovery as part of your personal injury case. The documentation you typically require to show you have lost wages includes:
- Pay stubs from before and after the accident.
- Tax returns or W-2s, 1099s, bank statements, and so on, for the past few years.
- A letter from your employer verifying your pay rate, normal hours, and the frequency with which you receive payment.
- A letter from your doctor stating the nature of your injuries and how long they are going to prevent you from returning to work.
- A copy of police reports, if relevant to your case.
If you have used up your paid-time-off (PTO), sick pay, and/or vacation pay as a result of your injuries, you are often entitled to recover this time. This is because you would have used it for something else, had you not been in an accident and injured.
Think Before You Post
Everyone enjoys sharing rants and raves as well as vacation and activity photos on social media but, if you’re involved in pending litigation, you may want to think before you post.
How Social Media Can Impact Your Personal Injury Case
Insurance companies and opposing counsel will often monitor social media accounts of plaintiffs in personal injury cases. This way they can find pictures and other content they can use to cast doubt on the legitimacy of the medical claims you have made related to your injuries forwarded by experienced personal injury attorneys.
For example, if you post pictures of a skiing trip you took after filing a personal injury suit related to an accident, opposing counsel could use these photos to make the argument your injuries and medical needs are less than you’ve claimed in the suit.
Pictures aren’t the only thing you need to be wary about posting. You should also avoid describing your injuries and treatment online. Even innocent mistakes or awkward phrasing on your part could give the defendant’s attorney an avenue to attack your claim.
When litigation is pending, loose lips sink ships. Therefore, take care that your social media presence doesn’t endanger your chances of recovering the compensation you deserve. Heed the advice of your personal injury attorney regarding your use of social media.
Contact Marc J. Shuman & Associates, LTD at (800) 722-9744 to speak to a personal injury lawyer today for a free, no-obligation consultation.