Category / Topic Archives: Back Injuries
According to the Department of Labor, low back pain accounts for one-third of all occupational mesculoskekletal injuries and illnesses resulting in work disability. A recent article in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, December 2015, states that two thirds of low back pain cases return to work within 1 month, but a substantial number … Continue reading Low Back Pain is Leading Cause of Occupational Disability
Mark Kabins, M.D. spoke to a small group of claimants’ attorneys last week to talk about treatment of work-related spinal injuries. Dr. Kabins, a long-time resident of Las Vegas, was a very animated and passionate speaker about treating injuries under workers’ compensation claims. He is a Diplomat of both the American Board of Orthopedic … Continue reading Mark Kabins, M.D., Orthopedic spine surgeon
Most people, excluding lawyers, are likely to tell you that it is an obvious fact that strenuous activity involving load on the back in occupations with heavy lifting, twisting, bending, and carrying will cause more back injuries. Athletes and medical professionals are less likely to make the injury causation assumption, and will respond that people … Continue reading Low Back Pain: Work-Related or Not?
There is a recent trend among insurers andtheir medical review companies to require a psychological evaluation before authorizing a low back surgery. Neurospsychologist Louis Mortillaro, PhD is asked to do many of these evaluations for the purpose of determining whether the patient is likely to benefit from a back surgery. Basically, the insurer doesn’t want … Continue reading Is Your Insurer Requiring a Psych Eval Before Authorizing Back Surgery?
Before an injured worker undergoes a neck or back surgery, he or she should be familiar with a few medical terms and what specific procedure the surgeon is recommending. Ask your doctor to write down the name of the surgery, and have him explain exactly what will be done. If you or your adjuster … Continue reading Common Spine Surgeries for Injured Workers
There is a recent trend among insurers and their medical review companies to require a psychological evaluation before authorizing a low back surgery. Neurospsychologist Louis Mortillaro, PhD is asked to do many of these evaluations for the purpose of determining whether the patient is likely to benefit from a back surgery. Basically, the insurer doesn’t … Continue reading Is Your Insurer Requiring a Psych Eval Before Authorizing Back Surgery?
There is a renewed trend among particular self-insured employers and third-party administrators (TPA’s) in Nevada to send a Notice of Claim Acceptance for "lumbar strain only" on low back injury claims. My fellow claimants’ attorneys are also noticing an increase in claims where adjusters are denying medical treatment for a herniated disc, because the claim was accepted for … Continue reading Are They Calling Your Herniated Disc a Lumbar Strain?
Many of my clients with very severe injuries must learn to accept that they will live with pain the rest of their lives. After they exhaust all that doctors have to offer and realize that there is no “fix”, these clients either adapt and live reasonably happy and productive lives, or they stay miserable. How … Continue reading Treating Pain with a Video Game
How to treat chronic pain was a topic addressed by several of the featured speakers at the WILG convention in Las Vegas this weekend. (WILG is a non-profit organization that assists attorneys in advocating the rights of injured workers.) Dr. Steven Simon, M.D. of the Kansas University Medical Group spoke about CRPS complex regional pain … Continue reading Complex Regional Pain Syndrome
Many injured workers with severe spinal cord injuries are reluctant to mention to their treating physician that they have had sexual dysfunction since their work accident in Nevada. Males in particular are embarrassed to bring up this topic with their doctors. Unless the doctor initiates the discussion and directly asks about any sexual problems, the problem … Continue reading Sexual Problems May Be Related to Spinal Cord Injury
Part A The NCCI is an organization that keeps statistics on work injuries in the various states. A recently released August 2011 NCCI Research Brief by Lipton, Laws and Li focused on prescription costs. According to this study, prescription drugs are 19% of the medical costs on an average claim. The study showed that it was not the price of drugs that was responsible … Continue reading Prescription Drugs and Nevada Workers’ Comp Claims
Delays in getting medical care authorized are the reason most injured workers contact me for help on their claim. Here is some additional information about treatment delays and what you can do to get proper medical care on time on your Nevada workers’ compensation claim. An insurer won’t authorize expensive tests like MRI’s or EMG/nerve conduction … Continue reading Delays in Getting Medical Care on Your Nevada Work Comp Claim
Most industrial insurers will schedule injured workers for a second opinion before authorizing an orthopedic surgeon or a neurosurgeon’s request to do a spinal fusion. It is a good idea, even if the insurer isn’t requiring it, to get a second opinion on whether a spinal fusion is the best treatment for you. Many injured workers immediately agree … Continue reading Should You Get a Second Opinion Before Having a Spinal Fusion?
See attached video for a great explanation of how someone with CRPS (complex regional pain syndrome) experiences pain. http://www.ted.com/talks/elliot_krane_the_mystery_of_chronic_pain.html
Last week, I had lunch with Dr. Mel Pohl, M.D., the Medical Director of Las Vegas Recovery Center, and his Admissions Coordinator, Jackie Pippin. The Las Vegas Recovery Center is a small, private facility that offers a chronic pain recovery program. While most chronic pain management treatment for injured workers involves ongoing prescription pain medication, injections and surgeries, this … Continue reading Hope for Chronic Pain Sufferers
Formerly called RSD (reflex sympathetic dystrophy), CRPS ( complex regional pain syndrome) is a type of pain thought to be caused by an injury or abnormality in the nerve pathway. It typically causes a burning sensation, and hypersensitivity to touch somewhere in the arms or legs. If not treated early, it may spread from one limb to … Continue reading Complex Regional Pain Syndrome: It’s Real!
I came across another website that offers information on treating chronic pain, as well as a comprehensive list of other websites with additional help for people dealing with injuries or illnesses that cause chronic and long-lasting pain. There may be something useful for you here, particularly the kit offered for tracking and measuring your pain. … Continue reading Help for Chronic Pain
When the adjuster sends a letter, either scheduling a rating evaluation, or simply closing the claim, No additional medical treatment will be authorized. That means that the insurer will also stop paying for any medication refills, and will not authorize return visits to the doctor for more medication. If the injured worker’s treating doctor … Continue reading Getting Medication After Claim Closure
One type of physician that injured workers commonly encounter is the physiatrist, also known as a physical medicine and rehabilitation (PM & R) physician. While the name sounds similar to a psychiatrist, a physiatrist treats physical injuries as opposed to mental or behavioral problems. A surgeon may refer her patient to a physiatrist after a surgery when … Continue reading What Is a Physiatrist?
After every visit to a treating doctor, the injured worker should make sure that he or she leaves with a copy of a physician progress report (PPR). Most doctors who are on insurers’ provider lists use the DIR- approved physician progress report form. However, some doctors have forms on their own stationery that have the … Continue reading Physician Progress Reports- Nevada Work Comp Info
Work-related traumatic injuries to knees and shoulders are common. These are two of the most complex joints in the body. If an injured worker is not getting better with physical therapy, reduced activity, and drugs to reduce inflammation, the initial treating physician may then order a MRI to better diagnose injury to the ligaments, tendons, … Continue reading Knee and Shoulder Injuries at Work
The 2009 legislative session was preoccupied with the economic crisis, the state budget, and an unprecedented number of bills vetoed by the governor, the majority of which were promptly reaffirmed by the state assembly and senate. Injured workers seeking reforms didn’t stand much of a chance to make significant changes in this climate. However, Assembly … Continue reading Little Change to Rules on Choice of Physician