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Office/Desk Job in PA... Cervical Herniation... Feeling Overwhelmed with what to do
I’ve had severe pain for a couple years now but this last year was a nightmare. Mind bending pain that’s far more frequent and intense. Most of what I seem to read here is about an actual injury where someone fell and such but mine is different. My issue is exasperated by the large amount of typing that I do in my 8+ hour day at work. I work in the financial industry and all my work is done on a computer. Over the last couple year I tried sitting different ways and even standing; nothing works. I never cried so much in my life as I have in the last couple years from this pain.

I finally broke down recently and had an MRI done. I prefer living in denial but the reality is smacking me in the face every day with more and more pain. I let this go on for way to long. Monday I went to my first appointment at the Orthopedic doc. My boyfriend who is a chiro had already seen the impression of my MRI so he tried to prepare me; it was bad. I don’t know why but when the Orthopedic doc looked me in the eye and said “wow you’ve got to be in excruciating pain every day… this is fairly serious stuff…” I just became a crying infant in the room. I broke down emotionally right there like an idiot (I rarely breakdown in front of people).

As a single working mother the reality that I can’t do the only thing I know how to do freaks me out. How will I earn money? How will I financial support my children? How will I live? I’m terrified. It’s so painful to work and I’m getting very depressed which along with the pain is just making things worse.

Tomorrow morning I’m meeting with an attorney a good friend recommended to me. He got a brief summary of my issue and knows the docs I go to. He thinks there is a possible case but I’ll know more tomorrow. Half of me doesn’t even want to entertain workers comp the other half is saying you don’t have any other options. I’m confused. I’ve always worked so this is a shock to my system.

I have a tumor on my spine that is most likely benign. I’m not even worried about that what I am worried about is my cervical herniation in my neck. These disks are pressing into my spinal cord. No doubt you clearly see it pushing into it in the MRI. Furthermore the nerve damage that the doctor said is highly likely especially in my right (dominant) arm. Yes, I'm going for an EMG and such. I ignored the pain for way to long… the damage is done. I type and it’s not only painful, I can’t even type right!

Here’s another reason I’m dreading a workers comp scenario… I do MJ each night not only for my severe insomnia but also it takes the edge off of the pain which believe it or not helps me to not have to take pain meds so frequently. The thought of not doing MJ stresses me out. I feel like I will get zero sleep AND will end up taking more pain meds. It’s vicious circle.

I guess I’m trying to connect here with others who have a similar situation where they work in an office environment who can share their experiences. Part of me feels a need to vent this out there. I’m just overwhelmed…

Thanks for listening!
sounds like there is a lot of depression associated with your condition.
I would talk to your doctor about a referral for counseling. you may profit from professional treatment to manage your expectations, emotions, and the pain from dealing with your situation.
Reminder :
........Each state has their own comp system; POST YOUR STATE to get accurate information. Use the search feature to find information from similar questions.
Thank you for your message. The only thing that's really making me depressed is the fear of not being able to work and if I will qualify for WC. Other than that I'm a content and happy person. It's this feeling of being overwhelmed and the unknown.
the last thing you need is another complication.
facing a major career change can be traumatizing.
you might want to investigate available vocational rehabilitation facilities and services in your area.
whether your claim is covered by workers comp or not researching tools to help changing occupations may lessen your fears.
the state of pennsylvania has some resources
Reminder :
........Each state has their own comp system; POST YOUR STATE to get accurate information. Use the search feature to find information from similar questions.
Thank you for the information.
I am assuming that you intend to pursue a repetitive use injury theory. If your doctors support this approach, you will have a potential claim, but as I am sure that your attorney will inform you tomorrow, repetitive use injuries are often denied and you would then have to litigate the compensable of your claim. You should also discuss with your attorney the sleep issue and how you deal with this issue. It is very common for employers to require a drug screen when an injury is reported, and depending on their drug policies this could form the bases to terminate your employment.
Timothy D. Belt
DISCLAIMER: This post is intended as general information applicable only to the state of Pennsylvania. The answer given is based only on the facts provided. This post is not intended to create an attorney client relationship, or to provide any specific guarantee of confidentiality.
Thank you Timothy. I actually didn't meet with him this morning. Due to the weather we had I rescheduled it for next Thursday. I'm sure they'll be eager to decline it as they are with any claim. Naturally they don't want to pay if they can avoid it.

It's not a problem to clear out my system which I'm 99% sure I'll have to do. I was thinking the same thing that you said about terminating my employment and such. I'm just concerned not only that I won't get much sleep but also I'll be relying again on even more prescription drugs. Drugs to sleep... drugs for the anxiety from not sleeping... drugs for the depression from having to take so many drugs. It's this lovely circle that I've been on before which I don't have to do any longer thanks to MJ. I've cut 90% of all my prescriptions over the years... so I guess I'll be back on that wheel again Sad

Again, I thank you for your advice!

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