Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy, and Fibromyalgia
It can be difficult to obtain adequate treatment and rest when you have certain pain conditions. These conditions may develop in response to a work-related accident. However, it can be difficult to establish their connection to work; insurers may be highly skeptical that these conditions are work-related. If you have developed complex regional pain syndrome, reflex sympathetic dystrophy, or fibromyalgia that you believe is work-related, you should consult the seasoned Riverside and San Bernardino County work injury lawyers at the Law Office of Joseph Richards, P.C. Having an experienced workers’ compensation attorney by your side can make a difference to the outcome of your case.Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy, and Fibromyalgia
Complex regional pain syndrome, also known as reflex sympathetic dystrophy, and fibromyalgia are chronic conditions involving pain. Complex regional pain syndrome may affect an arm or leg after an accidental injury, among other events. It may arise out of major nerve damage sustained initially. However, it can also develop when there is no particular underlying nerve injury. For example, it can develop as a result of tendonitis or bursitis. Often, the pain is disproportionate to how severe any initial injury was. The disproportionate pain can result in greater skepticism around the claim. Symptoms of complex regional pain syndrome can include joint stiffness, sensitivity to cold, skin discoloration, changing skin temperature, and swelling.
Fibromyalgia can cause discomfort and severely limit people who are affected. Symptoms can include chronic pain, fatigue, tenderness, sleep difficulties, and memory issues. In some cases, fibromyalgia is work-related, but as with complex regional pain syndrome, it can be difficult to make the connection between an event that occurred at work and the symptoms. Often, a diagnosis requires the methodical ruling-out of other conditions with similar symptoms because no lab test or imaging can definitively determine that there is fibromyalgia.Can You Get Benefits?
Workers’ compensation benefits are available for people whose pain conditions are work-related. If you were diagnosed with complex regional pain syndrome after being injured in a work accident, you may be able to obtain benefits. Benefits may also be available if you had a pre-existing condition that was aggravated or exacerbated by your work injuries.
You should be aware that it can be difficult to establish that complex regional pain syndrome or fibromyalgia is related to work. Sometimes workers’ compensation insurers have doubts that a chronic pain condition is related to work or believe that a worker is malingering, particularly if the injury did not arise in connection with an accident that had witnesses. Accordingly, you should keep scrupulous documentation of any tests that are done and your symptoms, including the date on which they appeared. A seasoned workers’ compensation attorney can make a difference regarding whether you get the benefits that you need.Workers’ Compensation Benefits
Workers’ compensation benefits to which you may be entitled include medical treatment, temporary disability benefits, permanent disability benefits, and vocational retraining. Medical treatment expenses can include not only doctor’s visits but also prescription drugs and transportation costs. Disability benefits may be paid at a rate of two-thirds of the average weekly wage of a worker. Temporary disability benefits can be paid for up to 104 weeks or about two years after the date when you were injured.
Sometimes chronic pain conditions do not have a good prognosis. You may be able to obtain permanent disability benefits based on your disability rating. If you are seriously disabled, you may also be able to get a life pension benefit. People who cannot go back to their prior job and cannot get a modification at their current job may be able to get a supplemental job displacement benefit for retraining or education.Consult a Riverside or San Bernardino County Attorney
If you sustained complex regional pain syndrome, reflex sympathetic dystrophy, or fibromyalgia related to your work in Riverside or San Bernardino County, you should talk to the attorneys at the Law Office of Joseph Richards, P.C. Our firm represents people in communities throughout Southern California. Call us at (888) 883-6588 or complete our online form.