Is Ulnar Nerve Entrapment A Work-Related Injury?
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Although carpal tunnel syndrome might be the most common and recognized repetitive stress injury facing Pennsylvania workers, ulnar nerve entrapment, commonly known as cubital tunnel syndrome, is another type of work-related injury that workers often face.
Anyone suffering from cubital tunnel syndrome due to work-related activities may be eligible for workers’ comp benefits. However, to file a successful claim, you must understand which injuries qualify for benefits and how the filing process works. A Pennsylvania workers’ compensation attorney can help.
Defining Cubital Tunnel Syndrome
Cubital tunnel syndrome, or ulnar nerve entrapment, refers to a condition where a patient’s ulnar nerve, which is the nerve associated with your funny bone, is either stretched or under pressure causing tingling or numbness in the pinky and ring fingers, forearm pain, and hand weakness. The ulnar nerve is the nerve located in the hollow area on the inside of your elbow.
Although carpal tunnel and cubital tunnel syndrome are similar, carpal tunnel syndrome affects the thumb and the next two fingers of the hand. In comparison, cubital tunnel syndrome is associated with issues related to the remaining two fingers. It can lead to grip problems, overall weakness in the hand, and pain in the hands and elbow. Just like a back, neck, or shoulder injury, cubital tunnel syndrome can affect one’s ability to work and, if left untreated, may result in a consistent state of severe, chronic pain.
The Average Workers’ Comp Settlement in Cubital Tunnel Syndrome Cases
Benefits from workers’ comp claims for ulnar nerve problems like cubital tunnel syndrome can range in payouts from $2,000 to as much as $40,000, depending on the severity of the injury. However, settlements will always vary and are addressed strictly on a case-by-case basis.
In Pennsylvania, a worker who suffers from a work-related cubital tunnel syndrome injury is entitled to the following:
- wage loss compensation
- medical expenses compensation
- loss benefits, where applicable, including the loss of a limb or the loss of limb use
- disfigurement benefits
These workers’ comp benefits are usually based on the following:
- the severity of the impairment or injury
- wage loss or an inability to work resulting from the injury
- the cost of health care related to the injury
In Pennsylvania, injured workers suffering from work-related cubital tunnel syndrome may be eligible for reimbursement of lost wages, partial disability, temporary total disability, and medical coverage. In Pennsylvania, employers must carry workers’ comp insurance. Compensation is generally based on the type of injury and severity, the total amount of lost wages and the length of time the employee cannot work.
Cubital Tunnel Syndrome Causes
The ulnar nerve damage that leads to cases of cubital tunnel syndrome can be the result of several common causes:
- Pressure: When someone leans on their elbow for an extended period or applies some other form of direct pressure to the elbow, the nerve can become compressed, causing cubital tunnel syndrome.
- Stretching: When the elbow remains bent for an extended period, extending the neve, cubital tunnel syndrome can occur.
- Movement: Repeated movement in which the ulnar nerve moves back and forth, causing irritation, soft tissues around the nerve can grow thick and ultimately block proper nerve function.
Who is at Risk for Cubital Tunnel Syndrome?
Ulnar nerve injuries like cubital tunnel syndrome are usually caused by repetitive stress trauma in the workplace. Those who have the greatest risk of developing cubital tunnel syndrome are the same people who are at risk of developing carpal tunnel syndrome and include:
- office workers
- assembly line workers
- manufacturing workers
- factory workers
- sewing workers
- upholstery workers
- maintenance workers
- meatpacking and processing workers
- mechanical repair workers
- construction workers
- retail workers
- truck drivers
- forklift operators
How a Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Attorney Can Help
Pennsylvania workers who suffer from cubital tunnel syndrome and other ulnar nerve-related injuries should consider working with an experienced workerss’ compensation attorney to ensure they get the compensation they deserve. The Richard J. Hollowell and Associates team has what it takes to provide strong representation in cubital tunnel syndrome workers’ comp cases. Insurers often deny cubital tunnel syndrome claims, arguing that a work-related injury did not cause the issue. Our experts will fight to get the compensation you deserve.
If you believe that you are suffering from a work-related ulnar nerve injury like cubital tunnel syndrome, contact someone from the Richard J. Hollowell and Associates team to take the first steps necessary for healing and obtaining the compensation that you deserve.
If you are worried about the cost of hiring a personal injury attorney, don’t be. The initial consultation is free. Call Richard J. Hollowell at 1-800-681-3550 to get started today, or click here for a free case evaluation.