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An Arkansas appellate court affirmed a decision by the state’s Workers’ Compensation Commission that denied an employee additional medical benefits for continued pain management where the court said the Commission considered the medical evidence, some of which was in conflict, and gave greater weight to the employee’s treating neurosurgeon who opined that the employee had reached MMI and released the employee to return to work with occasional lifting of up to 50 pounds. The court noted that the physician raised the lifting restriction from 20 to 50 pounds after viewing a surveillance video showing the employee changing a tire (with the help of a jack), riding a three-wheel vehicle around town, and performing other work in the medium classification. The court observed that while the employee had undergone the implantation of a dorsal-column stimulator for pain, the implantation had not resulted in any reduction in the amount of pain medication taken. This supported the employer’s contention that the implant was not medically necessary.
Thomas A. Robinson, J.D., the Feature National Columnist for the LexisNexis Workers’ Compensation eNewsletter, is the co-author of Larson’s Workers’ Compensation Law (LexisNexis).
LexisNexis Online Subscribers: Citations below link to Lexis Advance.
See Frost v. City of Rogers, 2016 Ark. App. 273, 2016 Ark. App. LEXIS 285 (May 18, 2016).
See generally Larson’s Workers’ Compensation Law, § 130.05.
Source: Larson’s Workers’ Compensation Law, the nation’s leading authority on workers’ compensation law.
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