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Photo of Craig R. Fishman

Tried And True Attorneys Standing Up For The Injured Since 1965

Construction workers are prone to musculoskeletal disorders

On Behalf of | Mar 7, 2024 | Workers' Compensation |

Working on a construction site requires a lot of physical labor, such as lifting heavy materials, drilling, pulling heavy loads, reaching above or bending. In this line of work, you often feel pain in your back, shoulders and hands as you work on-site. You could be extremely cautious while doing your job, but repetitive motions could still cause injuries. Fortunately, workers’ compensation in New Jersey covers injuries like musculoskeletal disorders which are caused by repetitive motions.

Musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) usually affect workers who do repetitive movements like hammering nails or using a jackhammer and similar tools. It impacts the muscles, nerves, ligaments and tendons. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration reports MSDs as one of the most common causes of lost or restricted work time. Here are five common work-related MSDs:

  • Carpal tunnel syndrome: This can lead to numbness and weakness of your hand or wrist.
  • Tendonitis: It causes acute pain, making it difficult to move the affected joint. It usually develops in your shoulder, elbow, wrist, knee or heel.
  • Rotator cuff injuries: This weakens the shoulder, limiting movements such as reaching out to the sides, above your head or behind your back.
  • Trigger finger: It causes tenderness and pain in the finger, making it difficult to straighten or bend your finger.
  • Muscle strains and low back injuries: This could cause cramps and spasms in your back, making it hard to bend and move.

Most construction workers develop MSDs, affecting their upper body. The back, shoulders, arms, and hands are the most used muscles in construction work. MSDs are often treated with medication, surgery or therapy, which could also limit the movements required for your job.

You can get workers’ compensation for work-related MSDs

MSDs develop over time. You might not recognize it initially, and continuously working the same muscle group could worsen your condition. Acquiring MSDs could be devastating, especially when it already hinders you from performing your job well.

Early reporting of MSD symptoms could prevent further serious injuries from happening. If symptoms worsen and become more frequent you can report them to your employer and get the necessary medical attention. However, getting a workers’ compensation benefit for MSDs could be tricky. There are cases where employers and insurance companies claim that the condition is not work-related. Proper medical documentation and the help of an experienced lawyer who understands your case would benefit you in getting the best result for your claims.