Understanding common injuries for your industry can help you keep a watchful eye while performing your duty. We are constantly seeing similar physical and emotional conditions arising out of the same types of employment. Most lawyers and advocates across the country would probably agree that certain types of work often cause the same injuries.
Postal Workers and Physical Stresses
For example, a common injury to a USPS letter carrier would be to the rotator cuff tendon. Between casing their mail route and repetitively reaching above their heads and carrying a heavy mail sack, letter carriers are extremely susceptible to injury in their shoulders.
They are also, however, highly exposed to ligament damage in their knees. Carrying the mail satchel up and down stairs, often in poor weather, can certainly lead to twisting or wrenching of the knee. Sometimes these injuries are minor, but after many years on the job, a postal letter carrier may require a surgery or even a joint replacement. ACL,MCL, or meniscus tears are the most common, but the knee is vulnerable joint and the added stress from carrying the mail can certainly lead to injury.
Common Federal Injuries
Another example of a common injury associated with a particular type of employment would be soft tissue injuries to the spine with Federal Law Enforcement agents. Due to the highly dangerous nature of their jobs, law enforcement officers are frequently exposed to altercations with assailants. If the situation deteriorates into and grappling match or fight, the officer could potentially suffer a variety of injuries, including a bulging or herniated disc in their spine.
Disc injuries can be minor. They can also cause extreme amounts of pain as they are so close to the spinal cord as well as the nerve roots that spread out to the rest of the body. A bulging disc in the lumbar spine (lower back) can press on the nerve roots that extend into the lower extremities, causing significant pain into the legs. Injuries to the cervical spine (neck) can do the same into the upper extremities. While the extremities themselves may not have any real damage, the nerves are being impinged upon as they enter the spine, sending signals to the brain that there is something wrong.
Another common injury is Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS). Carpal Tunnel is an inflammation of the tendons in the wrist that pinch the nerves running into the hands. It causes pain and weakness and impedes the person’s ability to grasp and do fine manipulation. Often seen in employees who do repetitive motion with their hands like typing and sorting of documents, CTS can be chronic and require surgery. Even still, in extreme cases, it can be career ending.
Emotional Conditions in the Work Place
Another extremely common injury that can be found in all types of employment are emotional conditions. They can be primary, meaning that they are caused by outside factors, or secondary as a result of chronic pain from a physical condition. Many injured employees develop depression and anxiety secondary to the problems they are facing with their injury and how that affects their employment.
Harris Federal Law Firm, helps injured and disabled federal employees all over the country with all types of injuries. The ones mentioned in this article are some of the most common, but there is no end to the potential injuries a person may face during their career. We strive to help anyone who is suffering from an on the job injury, as well as non-work related conditions to understand their rights and make the best decisions about how to deal with their federal benefits.
Whether you have questions about a federal workers compensation claim with OWCP or you want to know more about Federal Disability Retirement options, call Harris Federal Law Firm, to get a free case consultation and learn more about you rights. We look forward to serving you.