I was injured at work 2 years 8 months ago and counting.
I have had 2 surgeries plus 2 medical procedures and over a year of rehab. I am unable to work due to intolerable pain, limited use of predominant hand and the fact that the prescribed meds leave me feeling completely out of it - to the point that I am unable to drive. I am on my 13th different pain medication to date.
I have been on TTD since 2 months from my original injury date. I did attempt to go back to work (just over a year and half ago) and was only able to last 2 months. During these 2 months I was going thru a prescribed amount of pain medication in 2 weeks for a 4 week supply, plus using previous pain meds that I had been prescribed. I desperately wanted my life to return to normal and assumed that I could handle the pain and the amount/abuse of meds I was taking. I was wrong. This coupled with how I felt felt after my work week, I contacted my attorney and went back on TTD payments.
I have been to (3) IME's and the last 2 were with doctors who didn't even review my medical reports prior to my visit. Both have made absurd recommendations, lied within the reports(stating they did tests and asked questions that they didn't). The last doctor (though has dealt with nerve damage) is primarily a plastic surgeon dealing with micro-derm abrasions and breast augmentations. He suggested that 3 months with a particular pain medicine was not long enough and I should try again. Besides not dealing with the pain "my body" felt worse being on this drug. I am concerned because both my attorney and my treating physician (pain management) said it is typical that insurance companies will have doctors "in their pockets", minimizing any trauma/condition.
I have requested that my attorney send a settlement letter as after this time I have exhausted all savings and the TTD payments barely cover necessities. I am lost and not sure what I should do? I am unsure/doubtful that I will be able to return to work as both the IME's and my treating physician state that additional procedures will not be effective. Pain management is the suggested course of action from the docotrs. Though the IME doctors have not said I have reached MMI. I can only assume this is because the insurance company is paying them and they naturally "agree" with the company paying them? Ultimately I would prefer not to settle now but financially I have exhausted all savings and have even borrowed money in two separate occasions. My debt has grown, my income(TTD) has remained the same.
Is it an option in Illinois to have both a lump payment and PTD payments?
Any thoughts or recommendations?