| | Ulnar nerve transposition and Workers comp in AL
My husband and I live in Alabama and he works for a coal mine opperating heavy equipment. We have 4 young children. He injured his elbow on 11/03/2008 at work. He went to 5 different doctors before one suggested that it could be "ulnar nerve damage". Sure enough it was. The doctor tried to wait and see if it would improve with meds and time. It did not. His arm still went numb , had lost strength in his arm and hand, and he was still in pain. The doctor sent him to physical therepy, also did not work. He had surgery on it in July of 2009 where they took the nerves behind his "funny bone" and laid the over the bone so the nerves could heal without the bone pushing on them and doing more damage. The doctor told him he could go back to work in 2-3 weeks and to go to therepy . He was not able to return to work. He was still in a lot of pain, his arm still went numb and he could not do anything with his hand. They tried med, creams, patches the whole 9 yards and nothing helped. The doctors told us that it was a waiting game and that nerve damage takes a very long time to heal that it would get better. Three months after the surgery that doctor told him that he had done all he could do and he did not see any problems with the surgery so he sent him to a pain management doctor. She (new dr) contenued physical therepy and said the same thing, "wait and see what happenes". She also tried several meds, patches and creams but they still did not help my husbands arm. His arm improved some over time but was still a lot weaker that the other arm, had constant pain that was worse at times then others, went numb, and would swell if he used it too much. We went and talked to a laywer and retained him just in case some problems came up that we did not know how to deal with. The laywer has not helped with much of anything. He has not told anything to expect or try other than do what the doctor tells you to do, thats all. He did not give us any information on what a MMI was so when they game my husband one we did not know how important it was, he has 6% imparment in his arm and 10% whole body impairment. They put my husband back to full time work without restrictions and said to try it for a few weeks and see if you arm gets better with use and he did. His arm did not improve at all, it hurt worse. They told him the same thing at every visit. He would tell them his arm was not getting better and it hurts all the time but with excessive use it hurts worse, the doctor would tell him to try it for a few more weeks and to use the patches (that don't work). Now they say that he is as good as he is going to get. The same as he has been for about 1 yr in pain, and can't use his arm to do things that he has always done or hold a drink in his hand without the worry of his arm going numb without warning and dropping it. Our laywer told us WC wants to settle and that it is scheduled injury so the set amount is 6500.00. That is all he will get because he was able to go back to work so the pain will be hard to prove. My husband told the doctor every visit that he was in pain all the time and his fingers go numb often. He did what everyone told him to do. Now we are behind on or lost everything because his pay went from bring home 1200.00 a wk to 706.00 (the max). We owe his employer 3999.00 for uniforms, life insurance, and Aflac while he was off work and we are paying the back weekly and we live paycheck to paycheck. I called the state WC division and was told the laywer gets 15% and whatever else he ask compensataion for such as phone calls, letters, e mails, court apperance. Over all we went in debt over this injury and I was told to look at it as if he had lost his job, we would still be responsable for those bills. This has been a nightmare that won't end! . Life is not fair I know that but this is unjust and the injured party is the one who is punished it seems. I also know WC has it's benefits but I think the bad outweighs the good by far. We go to court next week and I guess we are going to settle, there does not appear to be anything else for us to do, the doctor and laywer don't seem to care or listen to my husband. My husband is a good man and has worked hard all of his life. He was raised to think a man is only as good as his word as were his 6 brothers and sisters and they have a good name to everyone that knows them. Can anyone give me any advice on the injury or WC? Thanks
Last edited by ConfusedInAL; 08-19-2010 at 12:22 PM.
Reason: too long