Horn Law Recovers $6 Million Plus Life-Time Medical Care For Injured Worker

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Horn Law Attorneys brought together 2 separate legal claims to produce a global settlement for a worker injured in a fall.

The worker, a 28 year-old electrician, suffered severe head injuries when he fell from a makeshift scaffolding attached to a forklift. The worker was installing new light fixtures in a warehouse when he fell about 10 feet to the concrete floor below.

Before substantial litigation took place, Horn Law attorneys orchestrated a settlement of 6 million dollars plus medical care coverage for rest of the man’s life. The settlement was concluded after 2 attempts at mediation.

The worker, who lives in the Kansas City area, is currently in residence at QLI in Omaha, Nebraska. QLI is one of the nation’s premier post-hospital centers for brain and spinal cord injury rehabilitation. Speaking for the firm, Lead Attorney Doug Horn said “now that the legal claims have been resolved, our next goal is for our client to return home to Kansas City”.

Horn was also quick to commend the efforts of all the attorneys involved in the case, including the mediator, Bill Sanders, Jr..

Surgery Indicated for Many Who Suffer Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Work-Related Injuries

Approximately 75% of all persons who suffer from carpal tunnel syndrome and are given steroid injections for their condition, will require surgery in the future. That information comes from new research that indicates that three-quarters of patients who were given steroid injections for the treatment of carpal tunnel syndrome, eventually undergo surgery for this painful condition.

Carpal tunnel syndrome is a condition that is marked by pain in the wrist. The pain occurs as a result of repetitive stress injury affecting the median nerve which is located in the carpal tunnel. The carpal tunnel consists of ligaments and bones, and is located at the base of the hand. If this area is constantly subjected to contact with a hard object or surface, or is frequently used or deviated, the person may suffer from carpal tunnel syndrome.

The person can suffer from pain in the wrist, which eventually develops into shooting pain that goes right up into the arm. There may also be a numbness or tingling sensation in the hand or wrist.

The traditional method of surgery is called an “Open Release” where the carpel ligament is cut to enlarge the carpel tunnel. Endoscopic surgery is becoming more popular because this type of surgery allows for rehabilitation.

Manufacturing sector workers who are frequently required to use their hands for manual work, and desk job workers who sit at a computer all day, comprise two groups of workers that may be at a higher risk for carpal tunnel syndrome. We see carpal tunnel syndrome often diagnosed with workers who do repetitive work with their hands.

Often, patients are administered steroid injections in order to reduce the pain, and eliminate the swelling in the area. However, the researchers found that even when steroid injections are given, patients will still need surgery down the line. In fact, they found that surgery to free up the carpal tunnel, and eliminate the pressure on the nerve that causes the pain, is the most effective and widely used treatment for severe cases of carpal tunnel syndrome.

Doug Horn is a Missouri work accident lawyer, dedicated to the representation of victims of workplace accidents across Missouri.

 

 

Missouri Workers’ Compensation Alert: Medical Treatment Considerations

Under Missouri Worker Compensation laws, injured workers are entitled to three (3) benefits, including appropriate medical treatment. While injured workers have the right to have all of their medical treatment and rehabilitation paid for, it is the employer’s insurance company who will decide which doctor and medical facility will treat the injured worker. This is called “authorized treatment” and means that the injured worker is prevented from going to their choice of doctor.

It has been my experience in handling Missouri Workers’ Compensation over the last 20 years that the choice of medical care can lead to problems for the injured worker. This is because the level of care is often less than what you might expect. Because the insurance company is footing the medical bill, the chances are that the insurance adjuster is going to send the injured worker to an “occupational health” doctor. These doctors contract with the insurance company and agree to substantially discount their rates in exchange for referrals of injured workers. “Occupational health” doctor’s positions are entry level positions and it is common for these type of doctors to lack the qualifications and experience to properly diagnosis and treat patients.

For instance, I know of a recent case where the injured worker was diagnosed with a shoulder injury. After several months of “authorized treatment”, including a shoulder MRI, the patient continued to have persistent shoulder pain which prevented the patient from returning to work. Finally, after an attorney got involved, the insurance company authorized a neck MRI. This neck MRI revealed 2 herniated discs in the cervical spine which were causing radiating pain to the shoulder. From there, the patient was authorized to go to a competent orthopedic surgeon who was able to treat the injury appropriately.

As is obvious, in the above case, the “occupational health” doctor botched the initial diagnosis and caused a substantial amount of damage to both the injured worker and the employer’s insurance company.

Although the primary benefit of legal representation in a Missouri Workers’ Compensation claim is to obtain a fair and full disability award to the injured worker, an attorney who is well-versed in workers compensation law can also help police the medical treatment and rehabilitation efforts. Ultimately, the goal is to get the injured worker the best medical and financial recovery. When insurance companies try to cut corners to serve their own best interests, it pays to have an attorney who is concerned with all aspects of the case, including the progress of medical treatment and rehabilitation