After a workplace injury, the injured worker may experience additional symptoms caused by or related to the injury. You may wonder how to handle these symptoms when they arise if you have an ongoing workers’ compensation case.
- Tell Your Doctor
When you begin to experience additional symptoms that you think are related to your workplace injury, tell your doctor. Even if you are not sure of the symptoms’ source, your doctor may trace them to the injury. For example, if you have a back injury and begin experiencing neck pain, the two could be related.
In Minnesota, workplace injuries compensable by workers’ comp insurance companies include any medical conditions “caused, aggravated or accelerated by employment activities”. In other words, the injuries must arise out of your employment. Symptoms that can be traced to a workplace injury are compensable. You can receive medical benefits to “cure or relieve the effect of the work injury”. This may include treatment of later-discovered symptoms.
- Get an Updated Doctor’s Note
When you tell your doctor about the new symptoms, your doctor may need to perform additional tests and treatment. Inform your doctor of your workers’ compensation claim and that the symptoms could be related. Medical expenses should get billed to the workers’ comp insurance company with which your employer has coverage. Ask your doctor for an updated note to reflect the new diagnosis.
- Ask for Accommodations and Benefits
If your new symptoms lead to any restrictions in your ability to perform work or personal tasks, get updated restrictions listed on the new doctor’s note. Give this note to your employer and ask for any accommodations you need to continue to perform your job. If you are having trouble getting accommodations or have any medical benefits denied by the insurance company, get legal help.
- Get Legal Help If Benefits Are Denied
When you develop new symptoms – especially if they seem unrelated to your injury to non-doctors – the insurance company may deny payment of medical benefits. A workers’ compensation lawyer can help you fight a denial of benefits. Your lawyer also can help with vocational rehabilitation, obtaining wage loss benefits, and more.
Have you developed additional symptoms of a workplace injury and a benefits denial? Joe Osterbauer, Esq. and the Osterbauer Law Firm stand up for injured Minnesota workers’ rights. Joe’s 27 years of workers’ compensation experience and his team’s speedy service combine to get clients the results they need. To schedule a free consultation, visit Osterbauer Law Firm online or call Joe’s office at (612) 334-3434.