3D printed vertebra implant used in China

Medical advances are giving people with spinal injuries hope and the future of workers compensation.

Engadget has a fascinating story about a 12-year-old boy who received a 3D printed vertebra implant. It is made from titanium powder and designed to mimic the shape of the original vertebra. Small holes allow natural bone grow inside and it does not need cement or screws to stay in place. This could be a breakthrough in the field of 3D printed bones.

Spinal injuries are some of the most challenging medical conditions that we see as workers compensation lawyers. Many of our clients undergo a surgery called a spinal fusion. This is when metal plates, screws, and rods are used to hold the vertebrae together, so they can heal into one solid unit. Additional stress on the vertebrae above and below the fused portion typically causes degeneration.

Lifetime medical care and permanent restrictions are common after a spinal fusion. This exciting medical advance give us hope that better treatments are indeed coming. Here is what you need to know about workers compensation.

Insurance company denials

Injuries to the spine are controversial because they are hard to diagnose and treat. It is difficult to pinpoint the exact source of pain and hard to prove that a work injury is the sole cause.

Many people suffer from herniated discs in their neck and back. This is a condition where the rubbery cushions between the individual vertebra push out. This may result in significant pain when nearby nerves are irritated.

Insurance companies tell you pain is just part of the aging process. This is especially true if you have preexisting degenerative disc disease or stenosis. You may find yourself having to prove that you actually got hurt.

Watch out for IME doctors who don’t have your best interests at heart. Be sure to get a second opinion from a doctor that you trust. If you were working until a specific event, this is good evidence that something might have changed.

Medical care under workers compensation is a lifetime benefit. All reasonable and necessary medical treatment is covered. Experimental medical procedures are typically denied outright. We hope our clients have better recoveries as these medical advances move forward.

Michigan Workers Comp Lawyers never charges a fee to evaluate a potential case. Our law firm has represented injured and disabled workers exclusively for more than 35 years. Call (855) 221-2667 for a free consultation today.

Related information:

Spinal Fusion: Back Surgery For Work Injuries

Photo courtesy of Creative Commons, by Michael Dorausch.

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