Workers Compensation in Pa. is a cruel joke on the injured employee.

                   I got hurt at work. Lifting a cabinet with a co-worker, he slipped and I lifted it the rest of the way. I felt a tweak in my back. 4 and 1/2 years and 6 surgeries later I am still a mess. My last surgery was in November, I had a 2 level fusion and 2 disks replaced. I still have a tremendous amount of pain in my back, whole right leg, right knee, right ankle, both hips, both butt cheeks and my left knee. I wear a brace that goes from my foot to my groin to keep me from falling.

I have been on Workers Compensation for 4 and 1/2 years. My check was weekly and there were times I didn’t get it for several weeks. To compound that I never recieved a letter stating the reason for the amount I was being paid. The day of my last surgery they filed a petition stating that I could return to work immediately. The day of a 7 and 1/2 hour surgery. My lawyer said the only thing he could do for them not sending a paycheck was file a petition and that might not work.

At one point my leg would give out and I would fall as many as 20 times a day. I have tears all through my right knee, but they said that had nothing to do with the original injury, although the original injury was causing me to fall. My lawyer got a stipulation covering the nerve damage in that leg. That was considered a victory.

I am at the stage of settling. I am not going to be able to work anymore. Disability is where I am headed, although I was shot down the first time, lawyers said it was because of my age. My age, not my injury. The lawyer told me it could take over a year to get a decision, that is a year with no income or health care. Very exciting. Now to the real screw job I am going to get.

I get to walk with a cane and a large brace, live in pain the rest of my life and probably have a shorter life because of it and all I get is 10 years of Workers Compensation pay. I can collect checks for 500 weeks, a grand total of $200,000. The settlement, I should say the joke, is $100,000. The judge and my lawyer said this is a good amount. A good amount for the hell I have been through and will continue to go through. I am going to get $80,000 after the lawyer takes 20%. That’s what I get for the rest of my life.

Workers Compensation laws are set up for businesses. They are not for the injured. The deck is stacked against the person from day 1. We do not have a chance. I am going to find a way to change these laws. Not one more person deserves to be treated like this. I lost a pension and a job I loved. I lost. I don’t want others to have to go through this. If there is anyone out there who is organized for change in Workers Compensation laws please contact me. I will do what I can to help change them.

Chronic pain and how it affects your life.

          4 and half years ago I hurt my back at work. I had herniated a disk a l4-l5-l5-s1. I was of course in terrible pain, was falling and had radiculapathy down my right leg. I had a lamenectomy and microdiscectomy. I felt better for about a week and all the pain returned. I had a spinal stimulatir trial, had it implanted and taken back out in a 6 week period. 10 weeks later I had a spinal decompression. About 6 months ago I had a 2 level fusion with 2 disks replaced. I have had the steroid shots in the spine and trigger point injections. I have done about 3 years of physical therapy and aqua therapy.

                 I have constant pain in my back that radiates into my butte cheeks and down the right leg. My hips feel like they are deteriorating. I get burning, throbbing, pins and needles and sharp pains all through my right leg. Sometimes it is in the left leg. I get muscle spasms quite frequently in my back and there is not a moment of the day that I am not in pain.

               I fall constantly and am unable to do any of the things a person my age should do. I can’t put on my own socks or shoes and have trouble with some parts of showering. Even wiping after a bm is difficult. I can’t stand for long periods, walk for long periods or even sit for long periods.

           The worst part is the depression. At times it is suffocating.  Between being in constant pain, not being able to function properly and the workers Comp insurance it gets very difficult to get up every day. Some days I cry, I am not sure I can continue living like this. It is these moments I know I need helpbut I lost my health insurance. I just hope that something good happens so this depression will let up.

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Workers Compensation is a joke on the injured worker.

               I got hurt at work awhile ago. Hurt my back, reported as I was supposed to. They made me wait the whole weekend to see the nurse on Monday who had a scheduled day off. So I went to their quack , who put me on light duty and sent me to a surgeon. Surgeon didnt listen to a word I said, he put me in Physical and aqua therapy. 3 weeks later we scheduled my surgery. My boss had to call the quack doctor to get me out of work. I was also falling from day 1, no one wrote it down.

                    I had my surgery felt better for about a week. I started feeling really bad again, they sent more for more therapy. It didnt work. Never the less I had a spinal stimulator trial, had it implanted and taken out in a 8 week period. It beat the hell out of me. All the while I was falling and no one wrote it down.

                I was on alot of medicine which didnt really help. As we were looking for different treatments the insurance company would deny medicine and treatment. I wouldnt get a check for 2 or 3 weeks at a time. It hasnt changed, I have a well respected lawyer and the insurance company keeps giving me a hard time. I had a surgery canceled because of the pending outcome of an IRE. Which should have had zero effect on me having surgery.

                  I recently had a 2 level fusion and 2 disks replaced, I am still hurting. The pain is sometimes worse than before the surgery. After gaining a stipulation to get the surgery, insurance company said they would pay in court, but are now denying payment. When I said to my lawyer that I felt like the insurance company can do what they want, he said they are paying you right.

             I just feel that this is another thing stacked against the common man. The odds are so stacked in favor of companies it is ridiculus. Not only am in constant pain, depression, but I get my check and bills screwed up because they send my check whenever. I am in bad shape and will be for life and they offered me a nickel and dime to settle. My medicals bills will cost them more. But I guess as long as the companies are taken care of, it is ok.


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