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Overuse and Repetitive Strain: Workers’ Comp Not Only for Accidents

Throughout the years, Deion Sanders has made a name for himself on and off the field, as a professional athlete, fledgling recording artist, and now as a workplace safety advocate. In his latest role, Sanders is bringing to light the repetitive injuries players in the National Football League (NFL) regularly sustain, including brain trauma, concussions, and other physical wear and tear. Sanders himself suffers from these injuries, which led him to file a workers’ comp claim, one of close to 4,000 claims in California alone pending against the NFL.

What are cumulative trauma disorders?

Most injured employees are not literally hit over the head like NFL players, but their performance of the same motion day in and day out eventually takes its toll on the body. This condition is defined medically as cumulative trauma disorder (CTD), a term that refers to a collection of musculoskeletal and nervous system injuries often classified as overuse syndromes, repetitive strain injuries and repetitive motion disorders. Common examples include:

  • Carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Tendinitis
  • Low-back disorders

Symptoms of these conditions include numbness, swelling, pain, tingling and weakness. The common denominator in all of these CTDs is the pain and difficulty sufferers experience when carrying out everyday tasks, which may even make performing their normal job functions impossible.

How can I be compensated for work-related cumulative trauma disorders?

While images of catastrophic accidents involving heavy equipment are often the first to come to mind when people think about workers’ compensation claims, many employees are actually entitled to compensation for the types of CTDs described above that result in injuries over the course of time. Indeed, workers in New Jersey who suffer from job-related injuries or occupational disease are entitled to specified benefits under the New Jersey Workers’ Compensation Act. This includes medical treatment, compensation for lost work time, and permanent disability when no type of work can be performed.

When repetitive strain injuries and cumulative trauma disorders bring pain and suffering into your life, seek assistance from the caring workers’ compensation lawyers at Hoffman DiMuzio, who vigilantly pursue claims to help clients receive the benefits they deserve.

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