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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 118210
Experience:  JA Mentor -Attorney Labor/employment, corporate, sports law, admiralty/maritime and civil rights law
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I am inquiring about issue dealing with an injury/ workmanship

Customer Question

Hi, I am inquiring about issue dealing with an injury/ workmanship comp. to give you a history. My husband was injured and required surgery to repair serious damage to his back , that happened to him while working a ship yard. (We live in a small coastal industrial town, that most people work for shipyard, chevron refinery, military ,school system, law or welfare.) everybody just about knows everyone 140,000 people. This injury happened 25 years ago. He was awarded a small settlement and full medical for rest of his life in relation to the injury or problems associated with injury that may develop. Once released from that procedure . He never claimed disability through government, he re educated himself for a engineering desk job. Fast foward to 2008/2009. He began to have problems with his back again and began going back to the doctor he was assigned through his injury procedure. This doctor is a pill pusher . My husband has several allergic reactions to the common med these type of doctors prescribe (loratab, oxy, etc.) he can not take them and does not . He has 3 vertebrae fused together in back from original procedure. They reorder him to have MRI, the nurse calls him and say they are getting him in a week because he has 4 more vertebrae totally gone 2 connected above his fusion and two connected below fusion.(normally it takes 8 months to get in to see this doctor). So he goes in to see doctors. And this doctor says that he doesn't see anything wrong with his back at all??????. This doctor still tries to give him prescriptions for the exact thing he can not take ? The doctor also is almost insist on surgery ? then says he can't see anything. So after many phone calls he gets referred to another neuro doc that can do pain management on him with nerve blocks etc. (the original doctor also records every visit with a tape recorder, he records what he patient says and what he says) well when my husbands get in to the new doc and they look at his Mri , they don't understand how he is even walking . and they all question what the original doctor said And are shocked! Fast forward to 2012 , my husband can't work, he can't sit, stand, and barely lay due to these injuries and pain. He tried to file for disability and this original crazy doctor say there is nothing wrong with him . So his disability got denied. So we have just moved on however his pain is worse his physical overall well being is damaged. He continues to go to a neur special to get (RF-radio frequency). Which is not a fun procedure( they make you bend over and stick a 4 inch long needle in the base of your spine and dial up the frequency till it gets the nerves that are bad or causing the pain and burn them so they will stop sending the pain signal to your brain)
This has to be done every 4 to 6 months just to tolerate life . And ther is many other test and sticks they do inbetween the. Months. Yet there is nothing wrong with him so they say.well today we just went for his procedure and learned that this original doctor has just retired ! Because he has lost his mind ( Alzheimer's) we were informed this by a nurse that works in his groups office . She was shocked to here he had said nothing was wrong with my husband back . Her exact words were " wow and that was before he lost his mind" as if she thought we already knew he was sick . we also know of 6 other people that has had similar problems with this doctor. And after calling a few others
We were informed by another hospital nurse that their are several people he has recently had mis diagnosis issue with at the hospital he's employed with.
The hospitol system he is employed with is a county owned hospital and he was known to be "in the pocket of work mans comp". Do to the main industry here
Sorry to give you so much back ground, but do you think there is anything we can do as far as going back and getting his case reviewed ? Or what would be our best procedure to move forward with.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.
I am sorry to say that once he received a settlement, that ended his workers compensation claim and it cannot be reopened as "settlement" means the case is over and closed.
I am sorry to say your husband's recourse on this now is filing for the SS Disability Insurance benefits and if they do not approve it (based on the condition you describe he is in) you need a local Social Security law attorney to file the appeal to get his benefits, which will be wholly based on the strength of his medical reports. In addition to SSDI benefits, he can also qualify for medicare/medicaid once the SSDI is approved and also possibly for SS Supplemental Insurance based on your total income.
The other option would be getting a new doctor first of all to examine him and then based on that diagnosis you can also seek to file a medical malpractice suit against the first doctor if you prove the last doctor has been misdiagnosing him all this time. You have 2 years from the date the doctor last treated him to sue for medical malpractice in MS.
Sadly though the workers compensation case has been settled and has been disposed of.