Whiplash is one of the most common injuries people get from a car accident. It occurs when the head is forced forward, then whipped backwards suddenly. It can damage the tendons, ligaments, and tissue found in the neck and spine. Unfortunately, this damage can be quite severe. But it’s only one of the reasons why whiplash is so dangerous.
It’s an Invisible Injury
When you have a cut, a bruise, a broken bone, or other obvious injuries, the medical team at the scene of the accident knows to treat them. These injuries are obvious to any doctor or medical professional. Whiplash, however, it’s easy to quickly diagnose. It’s not something that is immediately visible to a first responder or even to a doctor. It’s also not something you may notice right away. Your adrenaline rush can easily cover any of the pain from whiplash. The pain may not even appear after that initial rush. You may not feel whiplash pain for several days.
Primary Care Doctors Aren’t Experts in the Neck and Spine
Another reason whiplash is so dangerous is that primary care doctors often miss it or don’t know what to look for. They’re not experts in treating injuries of the neck and spine. While many will suggest you see an orthopedic specialist, not all doctors will, especially if they think your neck is fine. If you’re not feeling any pain and there’s no obvious damage, they may not recognize that you have whiplash.
Whiplash Symptoms Can Last for Years
In most cases, whiplash only lasts a few months. You’ll recover without any type of surgery, though seeing a chiropractor can help. However, if you have more than mild damage and it’s not addressed, it’s possible you will experience symptoms for months or even years. It could turn into chronic pain that impacts your ability to enjoy life.
This potential for long-term damage coupled with the fact that whiplash isn’t always easy to diagnose means that you need to seek an expert opinion after a car accident. If you know you experienced whiplash, called Maximum Orthopedics today. Our experts know exactly what to look for and how to treat this condition.
Posted on: Aug 25 2020
Dealing with an injury that occurred while working can be stressful. While the workers’ comp process is designed to ensure that you have the funds to cover all medical costs and make certain you’re not under undue financial stress while you can’t work, it’s not a process that many people understand. It’s also a process that can become derailed if the paperwork isn’t submitted correctly or on time. Fortunately, one thing you won’t have to worry over is your employment status.
The Connection Between Employment and Workers’ Comp
If you have to leave your job due to the injuries you sustained or because you’ve decided you no longer wish to work with your employer, it won’t impact your ability to have workers’ comp pay for your medical bills. Once the case has been filed, it no longer ties you to your employer. In fact, it’s not unusual for injured employees to leave their job if their injuries were severe.
However, while workers’ comp will still cover your medical bills, there is a chance that you will lose the option for vocational rehabilitation. Workers comp may pay for you to go through rehab so you can return to your job. It may also pay for you to learn a new job if your injuries were so severe you can’t return to doing the work you once did. However, if you change jobs on your own, you may no longer have that option.
Temporary Disability Payments May Also Be Affected
If you’re unable to return to work, your employer will pay likely pay you temporary disability. This money is to help you make end meet until you return to work. If you quit your job, however, it’s possible your former employer could stop those payments. If you leave for a new job that pays less than what you currently make and the reason is due to your injuries, you may receive a partial disability. This area can become very murky, so it’s best you have a legal professional on your side who is very familiar with workers’ compensation laws.
Maximum Orthopedics is here to help you with all of your workers’ comp paperwork and medical needs. If you need to make a claim, we can help. Contact us today to set up a meeting.
Posted on: Aug 15 2020
When you’re injured in an accident at work, you’re going to want to work with your doctor for diagnosis and treatment. It’s only natural that you would see the medical professional you’ve worked with for years. However, your employer’s workers’ comp insurance company may require you to also see another doctor for what they call an independent medical examination. This examination is vital to your case, but you may not know exactly what the point of it is. Let’s look at the basics of an IME, as they’re usually called.
It’s a Neutral Doctor
You may have been with your current doctor for years or decades. Some people have had the same primary care physician for all of their adult life. You know and trust your doctor, but the insurance company sees this as a problem. They believe your doctor may be biased towards you, so they want you to see an independent, neutral doctor who will, in their minds, more honestly and accurately report your injuries.
Why Does the Insurance Company Not Trust Your Doctor?
In most cases, the workers’ comp insurance company isn’t saying they think your doctor is intentionally lying. However, they do believe that they may be unconsciously biased because they’ve known you for so long. They also want any major treatment, such as surgery or other expensive or extensive procedures, to be confirmed by another doctor. If your doctor has diagnosed you as being permanently disabled, they will also want this confirmed. It’s more or less a second opinion, but unfortunately, one that carries a lot of weight in your case.
Who Selects this Doctor?
In New York, the doctor is selected by the insurance company, your employer if they provide their own worker’s comp insurance, or by the NY State Insurance Fund. This does bring into question their neutrality since the insurance company is paying them. In some cases, you are allowed to select the doctor, while in other cases, the doctor is selected by the judge in your case or is randomly pulled from a pool of qualified doctors.
What Happens During the Exam?
This exam isn’t going to be like a normal medical exam. Instead, the doctor is going to review your entire medical history, look over any documentation regarding your injury from your doctor, and talk to you about any treatment and symptoms you’re experiencing. If they perform a physical exam, it’s likely to be fairly short or limited. They often look more at your reactions and, in their letter, discuss their impressions of your injury. Also note that anything you tell this doctor can be repeated—there is no doctor/patient confidentiality!
If you’ve been injured at work, you want a doctor on your side who will work to get you the compensation you deserve. Here at Maximum Orthopedics, we provide very thorough and honest injury reports that will help you prove your injuries. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.
Posted on: Jul 28 2020
Motorcycles can be a lot of fun to ride, and for some people, they’re their main form of transportation. However, there’s also a risk to riding motorcycles. If you’re involved in an auto accident, you’re much more likely to be injured than if you were driving a car. Here are some of the most common injuries that occur from a motorcycle accident.
Fractures and Broken Bones
When you’re thrown from a motorcycle, even while wearing protective gear, it’s still easy to fracture or break a bone. During accidents, the motorcycle often falls over, trapping the rider’s leg under it. Having all of this weight hit the leg at once can easily break it. Riders also tend to try to break their fall with their arms, which can result in damage to the arm and wrist.
Road rash occurs when you go sliding across the road. The pavement causes cuts and scratches on any skin that isn’t covered by a jacket. In some cases, even light jackets or a long-sleeved shirt isn’t enough to protect you. The pavement can actually shred this light material. These injuries may leave behind permanent scars.
Spinal Cord Injuries
Being thrown from a motorcycle can cause damage to your spine. Some motorcycle riders are even left unable to walk after a serious accident. These injuries tend to be quite severe and require surgery or long-term hospitalization to recover.
Traumatic Brain Injuries
Injury to the brain can also occur, especially if you’re not wearing a helmet. Even those who do wear helmets are still at risk of a brain injury, although that risk is greatly reduced. Traumatic brain injuries account for more than half of the deaths from motorcycle accidents. Those who survive often find themselves permanently affected by the injury.
Dealing with Auto Accidents and Recovery
If you’ve been in a motorcycle accident that wasn’t your fault, you may be able to seek compensation, especially if your injuries were severe. You may also need physical therapy. The team here at Maximum Orthopedics can help you with both. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.
Posted on: Jul 15 2020
If you leave your job and then determine that an on-the-job accident was responsible for the pain and injury you’re suffering, can you file for workers’ comp? The short answer is that yes, you can file for workers’ compensation after you’ve quit, were laid off, or were fired. However, there are some complications that make the process a little different and more difficult than it would be if you were still working for that employer.
Why File Workers’ Comp After Leaving the Job?
Normally, you would file for workers’ comp as soon as the injury occurs. However, there are a couple of cases where you may not realize that you’ve been seriously injured. Sometimes, injuries that seem minor can become much more serious. This is why it’s so important to get checked out by a medical professional. However, there are some conditions that don’t show up for weeks that even experienced doctors won’t be able to detect.
The other type of injury that you may not notice right away is a chronic condition that developed over time. For example, you might learn that your wrist injury was due to the repetitive motions you made at your last job. It’s not uncommon for these types of cumulative injuries to only show up months or even years after you left the job that caused them.
Understand the Deadlines Involved
If you fall and immediately realize you’ve been injured on the job, you can begin the workers’ comp paperwork right away. Because there’s no time where you didn’t know you were injured, you typically only have about 30 days from the time of the accident to file your claim. With chronic conditions, however, the clock doesn’t usually start until your doctor makes you aware of the problem. The time limit is often different, too. You may have as long as two years to file your claim.
You Must Have Strong Medical Evidence
The most difficult part of this process is having clear, strong evidence that your injuries were caused by the work you did at your former employer. You’re going to need medical reports, witness statements, and more. Many companies will try to place the blame on something you did after you left their employment. Proving otherwise can be an uphill battle.
That’s why you need experienced workers’ comp doctors on your side. Contact the team at Maximum Orthopedics today to begin working on your case.
Posted on: Jun 23 2020
If you’re dealing with arthritis, you know how much pain it can cause. Arthritis is, in fact, the number one cause of pain in the world. It can make it difficult to work, exercise, enjoy your hobbies, and even do simple things such as a button shirt. Fortunately, there are a few ways you can manage arthritis pain and keep it from overwhelming your life. While taking over-the-counter medication is one such way, there are other options that don’t involve medication.
Cut Out Unhealthy Habits
Smoking and excessive drinking can make arthritis pain worse. When you smoke, the connective tissues in the body are put under more stress. This can make the pain worse. Drinking affects the body in many different ways, leaving it without the nutrients it needs. Both smoking and heavy drinking can also leave the body vulnerable to other diseases and conditions.
Movement can help decrease how stiff your joints and are even decrease the amount of pain you’re in. However, you want to make certain you’re doing the right type of exercises so you’re not damaging your body further. Don’t do anything that involves repetitive motions or high impact. This means you want to avoid running, jumping, doing high impact aerobics, and playing sports such as tennis. Instead, look for exercises that involve improving your range of motion and on stretching. Things such as walking, water exercises, cycling, and low-impact aerobics will help a lot, as will yoga and tai-chi.
Acupuncture can give some relief for arthritis pain. It does vary from person to person, though. For some, acupuncture does help reduce their pain quite a bit. You will want to make certain the person you’re seeing is a qualified, trained acupuncturist. Also note that acupuncture doesn’t always work immediately. It can take a few weeks before you start to feel relief.
Relaxing helps reduce stress, which in turn can help reduce inflammation and help you get through the day with less pain. Yoga, meditation, taking a bath, and other techniques can help you relax.
Work with an Expert
If you suffer from arthritis pain, you need to see an expert in pain management to work out what forms of treatment are best for you. Maximum Orthopedics has these experts. Contact us today to set up an appointment.
Posted on: Jun 15 2020
If you’re in pain, whether it’s chronic or acute, you need some way of managing that pain. Many people simply turn to medication, but that’s not the best option for long-term pain management. Instead, there are a number of other ways you can manage your pain. Here are a few that may work for you. Of course, you’ll want to discuss these options with your doctor to make certain they will be effective and appropriate for the medical condition you’re dealing with.
In some cases, simply stretching or building up muscle in certain parts of your body can relieve some of the pain you’re in. You may need to work your muscles regularly to prevent them from getting stiff and sore. While you certainly don’t want to over-work your body, some light exercise can help with many different conditions. A physical therapist can help you build up the right muscles and teach you what exercises you can safely do to manage your pain without hurting yourself further.
If you have back or neck pain, visiting a chiropractor regularly may help. These experts can realign your spine. This can help relieve the pressure put on pinched nerves or muscles that are being pressed upon.
Ice and Heat
Applying ice or heat, depending on the type of injury, can help restore mobility and decrease pain. This is obviously a temporary way of managing your pain that will need to be repeated regularly, but it can work to help deal with the pain until you can treat it with a different method.
If you tend to hurt only when you overdo it, resting may be the best option. While it’s not always easy to rest when you’re in pain, it often helps. You may want to combine resting with ice or heat to help you get to sleep or rest more comfortably. You may also need to plan for a day or two every week to rest by reducing your physical activities for those days.
Work with an Expert in Pain Management
Before you do anything, you need to talk to a pain management expert. Here at Maximum Orthopedics, we can determine the cause of your pain and work with you to manage it without medication. Contact us today to learn more.
Posted on: May 29 2020
If you’ve been injured on the job in front of a number of witnesses, your workers’ comp claim may be hard to deny. However, what happens if you’re injured and no one else is around? That happens more often than you might think, and it leaves you without any witnesses. Are you simply out of luck? While your claim may be harder to win, it’s not impossible. It means you’ll need to rely on other evidence to make the case for you.
Because no one else was there to witness the accident, you need to make certain it’s officially documented by your supervisor immediately. If possible, take photos of what happened or ask someone else to if your injury prevents you from doing so. Don’t wait to report an injury, even if it seems minor at the time. It’s much harder to file workers’ comp for an injury that wasn’t reported.
When you’re able, write down a detailed report of what happened. Include every small detail, even if it seems unnecessary. Write down the time, the place, what happened immediately before the incident, and any related information. The more you document here, the better. Be sure to have someone witness the statement and sign off on it, adding the date and time it was written.
Unfortunately, there have been people who have tried to take advantage of the workers’ comp system by claiming they were injured when no one was looking. This makes it harder for those who truly were hurt to get the compensation they’re due. It also means you need to be completely honest. Don’t exaggerate anything or intentionally leave out any details when talking to your supervisor, your doctor, the workers’ comp board, and anyone else involved in the case. Don’t downplay your injuries, but don’t make them out to be worse than they actually are.
Work with a Doctor Familiar with Workers’ Comp Cases
Your doctor is going to be even more important in a case without witnesses since their report and testimony may be the only third-party evidence you have. You want to make certain they understand workers’ comp cases. The experts here at Maximum Orthopedics do, and they’re ready to help you with your case. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.
Posted on: May 15 2020
When you’ve been injured on the job, it’s time to file a workers’ compensation claim. This claim covers the cost of the treatment you need and provides financial assistance if you’re unable to return to work for an extended period of time. However, like all claims, your workers’ comp claim first must be approved by your local workers’ compensation board. If the claim is rejected, you can appeal, but during that time, you will be responsible for paying all of your medical bills. If you’re unable to work, you won’t have any money coming in during the appeals process, either.
Many Workers’ Comp Claims Are Denied Because of Incorrect Paperwork
One of the biggest reasons claims are denied is because the paperwork isn’t submitted correctly. These forms can be fairly complex, and if you’ve never filed a workers’ comp before, you may feel overwhelmed. This is why it’s important that you work with someone who understands the forms and the entire workers’ comp process.
Your Claim Must Be Submitted on Time
You need to understand exactly when your workers’ comp paperwork needs to be filed and what additional documentation needs to be turned in with it. If you miss your deadline, your entire claim may be dismissed without anyone even looking at it. Working with an expert will ensure you know when these deadlines are and that you have everything turned in on time.
Your Paperwork is Missing Additional Records or Information
Besides your application, you’ll need to have information from your doctors, witness testimony, and other information. All of these documents will need to be included with your application. In some cases, you may be asked to sign a document that allows the workers’ comp insurance agent and others involved to contact your doctor directly for information. If you miss signing this permission form, it can delay the entire process. Working with someone familiar with the process means you won’t miss these simple things. You’ll sign all the correct pages, initial where needed, and date everything correctly.
The team at Maximum Orthopedics has assisted many people with their workers’ comp paperwork. If you’re new to the process and need some help, contact them today.
Posted on: Apr 29 2020
Shoulder pain can leave you hurting or even unable to do a number of basic things, including combing your hair and driving. We use our shoulders a lot more than you may realize, which is why pain in this area of the body can be so debilitating. If you understand some of the common causes of shoulder pain, though, you’ll be able to avoid hurting yourself. Here are some of these causes.
A Rotator Cuff Tear
When one of the tendons in the rotator cuff is torn, it can cause pain. Often, this pain occurs at night when you’re trying to sleep, and it can make it difficult to rest. If you lift your arm up over your head and it hurts, it’s a good sign you’re dealing with a rotator cuff tear. This tear may have been caused by a fall or other accident. It can also be caused by repetitive motions. Normally, some rest, ice, and over-the-counter pain medication will heal the tear, but you may also need corticosteroid injections or, in extreme cases, surgery.
Other Rotator Cuff Damages
While a tear is very common, there are other injuries that can affect the rotator cuff. Tendonitis, for example, is quite common. Straining the rotator cuff is also fairly simple to do, especially if you’re lifting heavy objects up above your head or play sports that require you to use your shoulder a lot, such as tennis. Tendonitis and bursitis, which is similar, can also usually be healed by simply resting the shoulder and using ice. Generally, these conditions clear up within a couple of weeks. If they don’t, however, it’s time to see a doctor.
Osteoarthritis occurs as the cartilage in the shoulder starts to break down. This makes it more difficult for the shoulder to move, making it stiff and painful to do certain activities. If you have osteoarthritis in your shoulder, you may find it becomes harder and harder to reach your hand up and behind your head and back. Something as simple as putting on a belt may become very difficult because you can’t guide it through all of the loops in your pants. For some people, osteoarthritis comes on gradually over the years. For others, an injury to the shoulder starts the process. Either way, you will usually treat it with ice and anti-inflammatory medication, but advanced osteoarthritis may require joint replacement surgery.
Let Us Help
The experts here at Maximum Orthopedics have years of experience managing shoulder pain. We can help determine the cause of your pain and work with you to treat it. Contact us today to make an appointment.
Posted on: Apr 15 2020