Keifer v. Delnor Community Hospital, 18 ILWCLB 218 (Ill. W.C. Comm. 2010).
The Illinois Workers' Compensation Commission found that the claimant met her burden of proving that her injury was causally related to an accident at work and awarded her temporary total disability benefits, medical expenses, and permanent partial disability benefits.
What it means: Where the mechanism of injury is consistent with an injury, and medical documentation throughout the claimant's treatment records indicate the claimant's symptoms, the claimant has proven that her injury was causally related to the work accident.
Summary: A patient transporter at a hospital was holding open a lobby elevator door when the door closed on her hand. She pulled and jerked her hand out of the door. She experienced pain, numbness, and tingling in her arm. She was eventually diagnosed with right cubital tunnel syndrome and underwent surgery. The commission held that she established the condition in her right arm was causally related to the work accident.
The commission explained that medical records documented symptoms associated with cubital tunnel syndrome. Immediately after the accident, she had pain in her wrist and hand, and she reported tingling and shooting pain in her arm. When she saw her treating doctor, she reported hand and wrist pain and indicated that her pain radiated up her arm and into her elbow and fingers. Furthermore, the commission found that the mechanism of injury -- a forceful pulling of her right arm -- was consistent with medical opinion that the transporter stretched the inside of her elbow when she yanked her hand out of the elevator doors, which stretched her ulnar nerve.
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March 24, 2011
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