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In our North Carolina workers’ compensation practice, we often have clients who suffer from knee injuries at work.

One factor that adds to the frequency of knee injuries is the aging workforce—the older we get, the more prone we are to knee injuries.

Knee injuries can be difficult to heal completely and are disposed to re-injury. There are many ways that pre-existing knee injuries can be aggravated with a new work incident. 

Knee injuries can happen at pretty much any type of job, not just heavy-duty jobs like a warehouse injury.

The job doesn’t have to be very physical like a construction worker or some kind of laborer. Even office workers who mostly sit behind desks can experience a workers’ comp knee injury.

This piece will discuss what knee problems qualify as a workers’ comp injury.

Common Workers’ Comp Knee Injuries

The knee is a complex joint consisting of a lot of moving parts.

It also bears the brunt of a lot of force on a constant basis, especially if your job requires you to stand a lot, squat and bend your knee, or lift on a constant basis.

With these types of activities, we often see the following common work-related knee injuries:

  • Fractures—Several bones and bony structures make up the knee. Many accidents such as falls or crush injuries can damage these bones, including the tibia (shinbone), the femur (thighbone), or a fractured patella (kneecap).
  • Meniscal injuries—The meniscus consists of cartilage that provides a cushion between the shinbone and the femur. Many knee injuries involve a torn meniscus. To repair a torn or damaged meniscus, the injured worker has to rest or immobilize the knee, ice it to reduce swelling, use a knee brace, or, in extreme cases, have surgery to repair the damage.
  •  Tendon injuries—Tendons connect the muscles that surround the knee to the bone. In some cases, these tendons can be torn, stretched, bruised, or otherwise damaged.
  • Ligament injuries—Ligaments connect the shinbone to the thigh bone, stabilizing and strengthening the knee. A ligament can be sprained or torn, such as the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), the posterior cruciate ligament (PCL), the medial collateral ligament (MCL), or the lateral collateral ligament (LCL). Repairing these injuries may require surgery. Sometimes steroid injections are necessary or even an ACL reconstruction.

If you are having pain in your knee, make sure that you seek treatment with an orthopedic doctor who specializes in knee injuries.

What to Do with Knee Injury at Work

The following are the things that you should immediately do if you have suffered a work-related knee injury:

  1. Immediately tell your supervisor so that a work injury report can be generated and the workers’ comp process can begin. Don’t wait to see if the injury will be serious. For example, if you are squatting down to pick up a box and you feel a sharp pain in your knee, tell your supervisor immediately. It may be no big deal, but you will be covered if it is a serious injury.
  2. Seek medical treatment as soon as possible. Going a week or two before you see a doctor because you were putting it off could come back to haunt you. The workers’ comp insurance adjuster may not believe you were injured at work and deny your claim.
  3. Contact an experienced North Carolina workers’ comp lawyer as soon as possible. Don’t merely rely on what your employer or the insurance adjuster tells you. Get your questions answered by someone who focuses their legal practice on representing injured North Carolina workers.

Contact a North Carolina Workers’ Comp Lawyer Today

With over 30 years of successfully representing injured workers, we know what it takes to fight for the rights of our clients.

We pride ourselves on being cost-effective and efficient as we listen to our clients to develop a robust legal strategy.

Contact us today to schedule a free initial consultation to learn more about how we can assist you.

Author Photo

Viral Mehta

Viral Mehta is the managing attorney of Mehta & McConnell Injury Lawyers, a Charlotte, North Carolina Workers’ Compensation law firm. He enjoys spending time with friends and family, traveling, sports, and reading.

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