I hurt my knee at work. Do I need surgery?

Study published in the New England Journal of Medicine questions need for surgical repair of torn meniscus.

CNN reports on an interesting study regarding knee surgery after a meniscal tear. Patients who had surgery appeared to have the same result as individuals who underwent a simulated procedure.

Half the patients in the study had an arthroscopic meniscectomy and the others underwent a fake “sham” surgery. A year later, there was no significant difference in knee pain and two-thirds on each side said they were happy with the results.

The study only looked at meniscectomy, as opposed to actual meniscus repair. Critics of the study also say there is a difference between individuals with degenerative knee conditions (arthritis) and traumatic injuries.

Our 2 Cents

We find this article fascinating as workers comp attorneys. Many of our clients suffer from on-the-job knee injuries. Typically occurring from bending, twisting, or kneeling activities.

All reasonable and necessary medical treatment must be covered under workers compensation. This includes surgery and hospital bills. Michigan law allows the injured worker to select his or her own doctor after 28 days.

We tell our clients to pick the best doctor in the field. Make an informed decision after weighing the pros and cons of surgery.

Notice of Dispute

Insurance companies routinely deny workers comp claims for knee pain. This is based upon findings of arthritis.

The insurance company won’t deny you have a problem. However, blame will be placed on old age or other factors. Ask your doctor whether your knee condition is related to your employment.

Many of our cases turn on whether a condition is degenerative or acute. You can have arthritis and a traumatic injury that is superimposed.

Call (855) 221-2667 for a free consultation with an experienced workers comp attorney. There is no fee unless workers comp benefits are recovered for you.

Alex Berman is the founder of Michigan Workers Comp Lawyers. He’s been representing injured and disabled workers exclusively for more than 35 years.  Alex has helped countless people obtain workers compensation benefits and never charges a fee to evaluate a case.

Related information:

How insurance companies use IME doctors to abuse the workers comp system

Photo courtesy of Creative Commons, by Oregon State University.

01/01/2014
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