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Can Office Workers Get Workers’ Comp for Repetitive Stress Injuries?

 Posted on February 15,2022 in Workers' Compensation

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_709171012.jpgWhen people think of workplace injuries, they are likely to picture serious accidents that result in significant bodily harm. While the need for workers’ compensation benefits may be evident in these cases, there are a variety of other injuries that workers can experience. Even though working in an office is not considered to be a high-risk occupation, office workers can be injured in multiple ways. These workers may experience repetitive stress injuries that may be caused by several different factors. Fortunately, all employees are eligible to receive workers’ comp for injuries that arose out of the work they have performed. By understanding the different types of repetitive stress injuries that may occur, office workers can make sure they provide the correct information to qualify for benefits.

Types of Repetitive Stress Injuries Affecting Office Workers

Repetitive stress injuries are caused by repeated motions or other factors that put stress on different parts of the body while a person is working. As office workers sit at desks, work on computers, and perform other daily tasks, they may experience injuries such as:

  • Carpal tunnel syndrome - Regular use of the hands and fingers can place pressure on the nerves that run through the wrists. Damage to these nerves may lead to numbness, tingling, pain, or loss of control in the fingers and thumbs. Regular typing throughout the day can increase the likelihood of this condition, especially if a person holds their arms and hands in a position that places pressure on the wrists.

  • Lower back pain - Sitting at a desk throughout the day can place pressure on the back and spine, especially if a person does not maintain good posture or if they use a chair that does not provide adequate support. In some cases, these issues may lead to misalignment of a person’s spine, putting pressure on nerves and causing significant pain. Stress affecting the muscles and ligaments in the lower back can also lead to ongoing pain and limitations in range of motion.

  • Neck, shoulder, and upper back pain - Sitting in front of a computer may lead to issues that affect the neck, especially if a person needs to look up, lean forward, or look to the side to properly view their screen. In some cases, this may lead to injuries in the muscles, tendons, and ligaments in the neck and shoulders. In more serious cases, a person may experience thoracic outlet syndrome in which pressure is placed on the nerves in the lower neck, potentially leading to muscle spasms, headaches, and pain or numbness in the back, arms, and hands.

While workers’ compensation is available for any work-related injuries, office workers may sometimes struggle to demonstrate that repetitive stress injuries were caused by the work they have performed. It is important to fully document the effects of these types of injuries and the work-related tasks that may have caused them. To ensure that they will be eligible for medical or disability benefits, workers should notify their employer of an injury as soon as they begin experiencing issues or receive a diagnosis.

Contact Our Gilroy Workers’ Compensation Claim Attorneys

If you have experienced repetitive stress injuries because of office work, Cramer + Martinez can help you take the correct steps to receive benefits that address these issues. We will help you file a claim or address the denial of benefits by your employer or their insurance company. Contact our Santa Clara County workers’ comp lawyers at 408-848-1113 to arrange a complimentary consultation.


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