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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2011
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    Default Emergency Room

    My workers compensation claim was made in the State of: Virginia
    DOI 4/11 I suffered a back injury at work have been to neurologist who looked at MRI said didn't see anything out of ordinary. I looked at report before dr appt said had three disc bulges in L3-L4, L4-L5, L5-S1 nerve root effacement and pronounced DDD at L5-S1 level. I asked him said that was normal for my age. I have severe pain on left said down leg. Neurologist suggested work conditioning and epidural steroid injection. I went to work hardening and doing very well. I had the injection and now things are worse. Been 5 days and I can't make the work hardening appts now. Icalled the dr told them what was going on all his nurse said was try to go to work hardening do what you can and dr will see you thurs to reevaluate you. He won't give me anything but tramadol and elevil. Can I go to ER if pain gets unbearable before my next scheduled visit? Also I want second opinion from another doc, I emailed my CA and he's out of the office til after memorial day. Any help out there?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
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    Calif
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    Default Re: Emergency Room

    You could go to er, with complaint of severe pain...you won't be given any more medications than what you are currently receving Rx from your Dr... er, doesn't give opiate meds, unless you are admitted, and that takes your Dr orders.

    It's not unusual for the injections to take several days to provide any reliefl, if at all...sometimes it takes up to 3 injections; Sorry, realize that is not what you want to hear...

  3. #3
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    May 2011
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    18

    Default Re: Emergency Room

    Thanks, the pain is horrible though I may have to take my chances with the ER anyway. Also the question on the second opinion is that something my current doctor has to refer or can the ca do it. Also if I ask for another opinion will this offend my doctor what mind of reaction should I expect.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
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    Calif
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    Default Re: Emergency Room

    No Dr would ever be offended by requesting a second opinion.
    You can expect the CA to send you to an IME for the second op... not necessarily a Dr of your choice.

    You should expect a positive reaction from your DR...or, change Dr.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2011
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    18

    Default Re: Emergency Room

    I also have another question not trying to wear patience. In Virginia when injured you are supposed to be provided with a panel of three doctors to choose from. The day the injury I went straight to ER on the following Monday I went to a doctor that I don't know was on the panel or not but no objection was ever made from my employer. That doctor refered me to the specialist I'm seeing now. Since I wasn't presented with the list of doctors to choose from can I not pick a specialist of my choice.
    Also ttd benefits have been paid and health treatment has not been denied so far so good should I still have a workers comp atty just in case?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Georgia
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    Default Re: Emergency Room

    Lola here is a link to the VA WC laws:

    http://www.vwc.state.va.us/portal/vwc-website

    It would benefit you a great deal to go there and educate yourself as much as possible as to the laws for WC in your state.

    If your pain is so intolerable and NOT adequately controlled by what ever meds., the WC doc gave you, (and especially if you have any symptoms of incontinence with your bladder or bowels), then that is certainly an emergency and you should report immediately to your nearest hospitals emergency department for evaluation and treatment. Depending upon the findings of the ED docs you may or may not get it covered by the WC IC. IF you have other health insurance you could use that until a resolution is reached over any denial from the WC IC. Regardless of coverage or not I would NOT just sit and try to exist with pain at an intolerable level.

    http://leg1.state.va.us/cgi-bin/legp...0+cod+65.2-603

    65.2-603. Duty to furnish medical attention, etc., and vocational rehabilitation; effect of refusal of employee to accept.

    A. Pursuant to this section:

    C. If in an emergency or on account of the employer's failure to provide the medical care during the period herein specified, or for other good reasons, a physician other than provided by the employer is called to treat the injured employee, during such period, the reasonable cost of such service shall be paid by the employer if ordered so to do by the Commission.


    IMO, NO ONE should have to suffer needlessly regardless of what the pain is originating from. I have seen others as well as have had personal experience where WC approved doctors under treat pain rather then to offer what ever medication necessary to relieve the pain caused by a work injury. I find it totally obscene that with a similar injury suffered away from the job the same doctors that tend to under treat the symptoms of pain for a work injury have NO problem writing an effective Rx for a patient that was NOT injured in the course of employment.

    Lola I hope you are feeling better soon. IF your pain symptoms continue to be such that it is in your opinion intolerable or as mentioned above includes symptoms of loss of bladder or bowel control I highly suggest you report to your nearest ED for immediate treatment.

    Take care and be well.

    Steel
    "He who is his own lawyer has a fool for a client"
    Abraham Lincoln


    Take Care and Be Well.

  7. #7
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    May 2011
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    Default Re: Emergency Room

    Bv, Steel thank you for your advice and comments really appreciate it.

  8. #8
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    Georgia
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    Default Re: Emergency Room

    Quote Quoting Lola12 View Post
    I also have another question not trying to wear patience. In Virginia when injured you are supposed to be provided with a panel of three doctors to choose from. The day the injury I went straight to ER on the following Monday I went to a doctor that I don't know was on the panel or not but no objection was ever made from my employer. That doctor referred me to the specialist I'm seeing now. Since I wasn't presented with the list of doctors to choose from can I not pick a specialist of my choice.
    Also ttd benefits have been paid and health treatment has not been denied so far so good should I still have a workers comp atty just in case?
    Lola please do NOT ever think you are wearing on anyones patience here. The whole purpose of this board is for support of IWer's/Injured Workers. No one here is forced to reply to you or anyone else so don't ever feel like you can not ask questions you may have or post to just vent when you are having a rough day.

    Regarding your questions/comments quoted above, IMO so long as you are getting the necessary medical treatment to cure &/or relieve from your work injury, AND all other benefits are paid in a timely fashion you should take this time to research and interview with several attorneys that are experienced with WC laws in your state.

    Chances are that IF your claim goes on for an extended time you will eventually start having problems with the WC IC &/or ER/Employer, IMO. You most certainly would benefit by having already contracted with or have an attorney at the ready to represent you when that time comes. Also already having an attorney on board has him/her in a better position to represent you as s/he will already have your file and know what is going on with your claim. This is much better than to delay bringing an attorney on board until the last second as his/her ability to give you quality representation would be impaired.

    Also with the kind of injuries you have it "might" be that eventually the IC will approach you with an offer to settle your claim. You most definitely want to have the best WC attorney you can find to help you with any settlement negotiations. More often than not an attorney will be aware of benefits you are entitled to but unaware of and many IWs make the mistake of thinking an attorney will cost them more money than it is worth to have them on board. This is seldom the case as the attorney will only be paid from benefits s/he secures for you. Again many times cash benefits you are not even aware are available to you.

    As to your question of picking another specialist I would refer you to the VA web site or ask your ER. If you are not satisfied with the answer the ER gives you then that would be a very good question to pose to an attorney. Does your ER not have the required posters in conspicuous places as required with their panel of doctors listed? Have they even offered for you to review their list of doctors? If not then I do believe as I scanned the WC statues for VA earlier that you can pick your own. However, it would behoove you to confirm that with an attorney or by reading up on the VA website as it looks like they have a very complete set of the WC statues on the website for your review.



    TC & BW

    Steel

    ---------- Post added at 07:22 PM ---------- Previous post was at 07:21 PM ----------

    Quote Quoting Lola12 View Post
    Bv, Steel thank you for your advice and comments really appreciate it.
    Lola you are most welcome.
    "He who is his own lawyer has a fool for a client"
    Abraham Lincoln


    Take Care and Be Well.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    18

    Default Re: Emergency Room

    Steel On day of injury they didnt even have incident reports on site. ER sent me to emergency room day it happened. Took X-rays sent me home for back strain. Over weekend pain was worse I knew of an occupational health doc in the area and that's where I went. The doc seen me one time and immediately sent me for MRI. This showed the disc bulges eccentric to the left confirming my pain because it is all on the left from the beginning. The dr sent
    R straight to neurosurgeon who is my current dr. On my first visit he came in said tests ate normal just a strain. I told him of the pain down leg and he ordered more PT and a emg/ nerve test which I got and he said those results were normal! He came in grabbed left leg and I screamed in pain. His response that shouldn't hurt. Sorry to disappoint but it did so be ordered a myelogram and bone scan. I so got these results before my appointment bone scan was normal, myelogram showed the bulges. Still he down played the injuries but he offered epidural injection and work hardening. Still only thing be would give is ultracet for pain. I called several times to get something more and the nurse calls and said sorry that's all he thinks you need since your tests are normal. So I was doing pretty good getting better I thought everyday at PT. I went in had shot now I feel worse than ever. I called the dr and told nurse I can't even make it to PT I'm hurting to much. Her reply was you have to go just do what you can the dr will re acces you on Thursday. What about the pain she said sorry ultracet is all he gives. I told her I was a 10 of 10 in pain her response hunny 10 in pain is for cancer patients. Wow! Im so glad she is in my body and knows how I feel. This is my reasoning behind emergency room and second opinion.

  10. #10
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    Mar 2007
    Location
    Georgia
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    Default Re: Emergency Room

    Lola, you have my deepest empathy for what you are currently going through with un/under treated pain issues. Some doctors just don't believe a human being that is not a cancer patient on deaths door should be provided with an effective medication to treat their "non-malignant" pain issues.

    My last IME was with a PM doc and his report concerning my injuries from my neck-cervical/shoulder/arm/& hand pain, "I recommend that Mrs. *** be weened from ALL narcotic pain medications as these types of medications are reserved only for treating pain for patients with malignant-cancer pain." He further added that IF I had an on going need for strong pain medications that I should cease ALL long acting medications and resort to short acting oxycodone only as it not an expensive medication. Yes mama that is what he put in his report.

    NOT only is this in direct conflict with what my ATP/PM doc opines and prescribes but it is also in direct conflict with what many PM docs believe to be in the best interest of their patients. Regardless of what the pain is originating from. Unfortunately for many that suffer from pain caused by a work injury they end up with a jerk like the IME doc I seen. Geez even the WHO has recognized the need for adequate pain relief for non-malignant pain. Makes we want to ask these jokers that under treat their patients for pain what kind of quality of life they think these patients have. Also many studies have been done that provides evidence that when your body uses all of it's energy fighting the pain there is little if any energy left to heal.

    Given that your pain symptoms appear to result from nerve impingement or damage and damaged nerves seem to take forever to heal/regenerate I would think it very important to keep your daily pain at a minimum IF he ever expects you to get better. That right there may be part of his hesitation as the longer it takes you to heal the longer he treats you and receives payment. There are some doctors that take that approach and have little to any concern for the human beings that they are treating.

    I would have already been to the ED for treatment were I in your position. Lola you have to do what ever it is you can live with. Is the appointment you have this Thursday, as in the day after tomorrow? From the time your pain increased to now I am sure has felt like an eternity to you.

    Have you tried heat/ice or perhaps a hot or cold shower to try to get some relief? I know I would be up a creek without the added non-medication ways I use to cope with my 24hr, 365day pain issues. I also use a tens unit that is "my best friend" most all the time it is on and cranked up. Also I use bio-freeze on the painful areas. Although I know that is not necessarily a "pain reliever" in the opinion of others but it does at least cause a distraction from the pain.

    Hope you get to feeling better soon and/or get a different doctor that will be a bit more sympathetic toward you.
    "He who is his own lawyer has a fool for a client"
    Abraham Lincoln


    Take Care and Be Well.

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