Manual labor can take a toll on your body. Most people feel tired and sore after even just a few days of working at a construction site or stocking heavy items in a store, even if those workers are young and healthy. Physically demanding summer jobs during their high school years have motivated many people to pursue educational qualifications for jobs that are less rough on one’s hands, feet, and back. Likewise, if you ask each person who finishes a senior citizens’ marathon what kinds of jobs they held in their younger days, you will probably find more retired math teachers and stay at home moms than miners and bricklayers.
Improved safety standards in the workplace help protect people with physically demanding jobs from injury, but sometimes the demands of the job still carry a high risk that workers will develop chronic illnesses or injuries because of them. Workers whose work injuries develop slowly over time are eligible to apply for and receive workers’ compensation benefits. A workers’ compensation lawyer can help you with your claim.
Examples of Occupational Diseases
Missouri law defines an occupational disease as one caused by exposure in the workplace. Missouri does not have an official list of occupational diseases; rather, if the doctor who diagnoses your illness or injury concludes that the demands of your job caused or worsened your condition, you may list the illness in your workers’ compensation claim and receive benefits. These are some common occupational diseases.
- Epicondylitis is pain and swelling of the elbow or knee joint; it can result from a variety of physically demanding jobs. Tennis elbow and golfer’s elbow are common names from epicondylitis.
- Carpal tunnel syndrome is pain, numbness, and weakness in the hand and fingers because of nerve damage in the wrist.
- Hearing loss from prolonged exposure to loud noise is an occupational disease. It is common in workers who use jackhammers for road construction and workers who work in the areas of airports near where planes take off and land.
- In workers who experience prolonged exposure to radiation at work, illnesses caused by radiation exposure count as occupational diseases eligible for workers’ compensation. Skin cancer and leukemia are among the diseases linked to radiation exposure.
- Coal workers’ pneumoconiosis, also known as black lung disease, is scarring of the lungs as a result of prolonged exposure to coal dust.
- Mesothelioma is a type of cancer caused by asbestos. It affects the membranes that surround the lungs and other organs of the body.
- Post-traumatic stress disorder is a mental illness in which the patient suffers long-term emotional distress because of a traumatic event; it was originally diagnosed in war veterans but is now understood to be caused by any kind of traumatic event, including but not limited to war. If the trauma occurred in the workplace, it can be grounds for a workers’ compensation claim.
Contact Walton Telken Attorneys at Law About Workers’ Compensation Cases
If your illness or injury was caused by work, notify your employer promptly, and ask a lawyer if you have any questions. Contact Walton Telken Injury Attorneys in the St. Louis, Missouri area to see if you need help with your workers’ compensation claim or are considering filing a lawsuit.