Work tendon injury claims

Updated: October 8, 2018

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) recorded 526,000 cases of tendon injuries and other musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) in 2013/14, around 42% of all work-related illnesses.

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Most tendon injuries affect workers who carry out repetitive movements such as data entry. Office workers, assembly line operators, supermarket checkout operatives and manual labourers are particularly at risk due to the constrained and repetitive nature of their work.

Anyone who has developed a tendon injury that is connected to their job may be able to claim compensation from their employer.

Office worker

Common work-related tendon injury claims

Tendon injury at work is a broad term that includes a number of painful conditions occurring in and around the tendons in response to excessive force, exertion or overuse. It commonly occurs where:

  • The same task is carried out continuously over a period of time, leading to conditions such as repetitive strain injury (RSI) and tendonitis.
  • The worker is required to adopt a constrained posture such as crouching or kneeling, leading to a gradual deterioration of the tendon (tendinopathy) or bursitis.
  • The worker falls from height, slips or trips, or has a manual handling accident in the workplace which can cause a sudden tear in the tendon (tendon rupture).

The cause of the tendon injury is significant. It must be shown that the injury was caused by unsafe work practices, and that the employer failed to take the proper precautions to keep their employees safe from harm.

Tendinopathy

This condition is a disease of the tendon that is distinct from RSI, although the symptoms can be similar. Tendinopathy presents as tenderness and pain when the region around the tendon is touched or the tendon is exercised.

Terms used to describe the categories of tendon pain are:

  • Tendinitis - meaning inflammation with an acute injury
  • Tendinosis - meaning no inflammation but a chronic tendon injury is evident and the result of cellular degeneration
  • Tendinopathy - meaning chronic tendon injuries are evident but medical cause of the pain is not necessarily clear

If it can be proved that the harm was the result of an employer's negligence, it may be possible to make a claim for each of the above categories of tendon injury.

Flexor Tendonitis

The flexor tendons connect the forearm muscles to the finger and thumb bones. Flexor Tendonitis can affect workers who sustained finger injury either through overuse, such as by using a keyboard all day, or through a sudden impact.

The Flexor Hallucis Longus muscle connects the fibula leg bone to the big toe via the flexor hallucis longus tendon. Injury can result from wear and tear of this tendon through overuse. Ballet dancers and athletes often experience injury as a result of damage to this tendon, but a jarring impact to the toe can also result in tendonitis.

Prognosis

Most tendon injuries heal without medical intervention although they may take several weeks or months to do so.

During this time, movement in the affected area may become difficult or even impossible. More persistent injuries may require treatments such as corticosteroid injections or physiotherapy. Surgery may be necessary to repair a ruptured tendon or to treat persistent injuries that have not responded to non-surgical intervention.

As an initial step, the injury lawyer will arrange a medical examination to establish the extent of the tendon injury and the long-term effect this might have on the Claimant's life. The medical report is used as basis for negotiating the settlement award.

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Your employer's duty of care

Employers have a legal duty to protect their employees against the risk of accident and injury in the workplace. General provisions for this are made in a number of health and safety laws, including:

  • The Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974, Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992, Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999, Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992. These Regulations place a legal duty on employers to provide safe working conditions, safe equipment and appropriate safety training for their employees.
  • Health and Safety (Display Screen Equipment) Regulations 1992. This piece of legislation provides guidelines for setting up an ergonomic workstation when working with display screen equipment.

An employer who fails to identify the risks or implement appropriate safety measures as prescribed by the Regulations would be deemed negligent and therefore liable.

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What if a doctor misdiagnosed my tendon injury?

Almost all tendon injuries cause tenderness, inflammation and pain. As such, it is common for doctors to mistake a serious tendon injury that requires emergency surgery for a minor injury that does not. Delays in treatment may drastically reduce the patient's chances of making a successful recovery.

Quittance's expert medical negligence solicitors can help to build a case against the medical practitioner where:

  • The injury is not diagnosed straight away
  • The wrong diagnosis is given
  • The incorrect course of treatment is recommended.

This is known as medical misdiagnosis. In each case, it must also be shown that the error caused unnecessary pain and suffering or led to a worse outcome for the Claimant. Read more about making a clinical or medical negligence claim.

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No Win, No Fee agreements with tendon injury compensation claims

No Win, No Fee agreements, or Conditional Fee Agreements (CFAs), are an important part of a personal injury claim.

A CFA sets out the service the solicitor handling your case will deliver as well as a percentage success fee. This success fee is the fee to be taken from the award when the injury lawyer wins the claim.

Get complete peace of mind with the knowledge that you will never be out of pocket and there will be nothing to pay at the outset. There are no hidden fees when choosing a Quittance solicitor.

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Calculate my work tendon injury compensation

The amount of compensation you will receive depends on a number of factors. Our work accident compensation calculator provides an accurate estimate of your likely compensation.

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Road traffic accident claims

Every year almost 200,000* people are injured on Britain's roads. If you have been injured in a road accident that was not your fault, you can claim compensation.

Find out more about claiming tendon injury compensation for a road accident: Read more about road accident claims

*Source: Official Department of Transport statistics (gov.uk)

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Meet our team

Quittance's national network of solicitors handle all types of work accident claims and have a wealth of experience in fast track, complex and catastrophic injury claims. Our solicitors are chosen on the basis of their level of specialist experience and their track record in recovering compensation.

Click here to meet more of the team.

Kevin Walker Serious Injury Panel Solicitor
Emma Bell Employers and Public Liability Panel Solicitor
Shahida Chaudery Complex Injury Claims Panel Solicitor
Gaynor Haliday, Legal researcher

About the author

Gaynor Haliday is an experienced legal researcher and published author. She has had numerous articles published in the press and is a legal industry commentator.

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