The most common type of injury in Workers' Compensation claims is a "soft tissue" injury. What this means is that the injury sustained has affected muscles, ligaments, tendons, or nerves. Common soft tissue injuries include:
- Neck sprains or strains
- Torn rotator cuff and shoulder injuries
- Knee injuries including torn cartilage or ligaments
- Cervical, Eye, or Bursitis pain (tendon damage)
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (ligament damage) and wrist and elbow injuries
- Sciatica and other damaged nerve injuries
- Low back pain or herniated lumbar disc
- Concussions or post concussion syndrome
- Repetitive motion injuries
Other common Workers' Compensation injuries include:
- Fractured or broken bones and joints including broken arm, broken leg, and fractured hip
- Hearing or vision loss
- Ulcers and stress-related illnesses such as high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease
- Psychological injuries including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, and anxiety.
Typically an injury covered by Workers' Compensation must be a physical injury. Often, treatments for psychological trauma or injuries will be covered if the condition is diagnosed as resulting from the initial physical injury. However, this policy varies from state to state. An injury that is only psychological and is not physical in nature is not covered in many states. Nonetheless, states will consider a claim of psychological injury based on the following federal regulations for a psychological claim:
- Establish that an event, situation, or allegation occurred to precipitate the psychological condition.
- That this event occurred while performing official duties or an activity appropriately related to the employment.
- There has been a medical diagnosis of the psychological condition.
- That the medical diagnosis establishes a connection between the event, situation or allegation to the psychological condition.
Finally, the claim must be filed within the same regulations governing physical injury claims.