Strains, Sprains and Workers’ Comp
Strains and sprains a common workplace injuries. They often result from lifting, pulling, pushing or even restraining an object. As per the Bureau of Labor Statistics, they account for more than 40 percent of all work-related injuries. Strains and sprains are actually two separate conditions. They can both happen at the same time, or they can happen independently. Both are compensable under workers’ compensation laws.
Tendons are thick tissue that attach muscles to the skeleton. When a person twists, overstretches or tears a muscle or tendon, he or she suffers a strain. The most common muscles to suffer work-related strains are the back muscles. There are two types of strains. Acute strains happen when muscles or tendons are either excessively stretched or contracted. Chronic strains occur as a result of repetitive motion. All strains are classified in one of three ways:
- Grade I strains are mild with minimal muscle damage. These strains usually heal in about 14 days.
- Grade II strains are moderate with more muscle damage. This type of strain might take six weeks to heal.
- Grade III strains are severe. The muscle is totally ruptured, and surgery is usually required to repair the injury. Recovery could take three to four months.
A sprain involves ligaments that connect bones. As opposed to strains that affect muscles, sprains involve joints like the ankle or wrist. Like strains, sprains have three classifications too:
- Grade I strains are mild with minimal ligament tearing. There’s little objective evidence of an injury, and the affected joint remains stable.
- Grade II sprains involve partial tearing of the affected ligament. There’s objective evidence of an injury from bruising and swelling. Weight bearing will be difficult.
- Grade III sprains are severe and involve complete tearing of a ligament. Surgery and immobilization of the joint are highly likely.
Once a body part is strained or sprained, it becomes prone to being injured again in the future. You’ll want to report your injury to your employer. Any work-related strain or sprain should be evaluated by a physician. Keep copies of all of your medical bills and any other documents in connection with you care and treatment. Strains and sprains can only heal completely with rest and immobilization. That could mean weeks or even months away from work when the bills keep coming in.
Sacramento Workers’ Compensation Lawyer
If you have suffered one of these injuries please feel free to contact us for free advice. We will either help you or point you in the correct direction so you can focus on moving forward.
In almost all cases when someone is injured on the job, the worker will get the best possible outcome by hiring an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer.
Attorney Alice A. Strömbom focuses exclusively on Workers’ Compensation Law. She is very familiar with the tactics insurance companies use to avoid providing the medical treatment and disability benefits injured workers deserve, and has a recognized track record in combating such issues.
Contact us today for a free, confidential consultation and case evaluation.