Does Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Qualify as a Disability

Carpal tunnel disability

Category: Disability Law

Carpal tunnel disability

A large portion of the American workforce performs most or all of their works tasks on a computer. Years of computer use can lead to a very painful condition in the arm and wrist called “carpal tunnel syndrome”. This insidious syndrome is caused by the wear and tear of the wrist and the pathway in which the carpals work. The narrowing of this pathway causes friction and damages nerve endings causing the wrist, and sometimes the elbow or entire arm, to hurt immensely.

There are treatments for carpal tunnel syndrome. People usually start by switching to a track-ball mouse device. This allows the user to keep the arm in a more straightened position. Another implement which can help sufferers of carpal tunnel syndrome is a wrist brace made specifically for this symptom.

People will also try to switch arms. They will train themselves to use the mouse device with their non-dominant hand. Some folks have a natural ability to use their non-dominant arm while others simply cannot.

Still many people cannot seem to get relief by using the special mouse or wrist brace. The next step is usually surgery. There is a surgery called “carpal tunnel release”, listed here on Johns Hopkins website. On their website, Johns Hopkins describes the surgery: “During a carpal tunnel release, a surgeon cuts through the ligament that is pressing down on the carpal tunnel. This makes more room for the median nerve and tendons passing through the tunnel, and usually improves pain and function.”

If all methods to treat carpal tunnel syndrome are a failure, and the sufferer in question is not able to work any other job, they be able to qualify for disability. Although carpal tunnel syndrome is not listed as one of the covered ailments in the disability literature, the individual may qualify another way, for example, SSA Listing 11.14, on Peripheral Neuropathy. This term means that a person has trouble using their arms/wrists/hands or legs/ankles/feet.

If you are at your wits’ end with your carpal tunnel syndrome and have tried solutions which have failed, you may qualify for disability. It is best to consult with a professional attorney on this matter and see what they have to say.


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