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Workers' compensation specialist in pittsburgh

Workers’ Compensation

If you have been injured at work, you need someone on your side. You need a physician who understands the Pennsylvania Workers' Compensation Act and all of the regulations that your employer and its insurance company will never adequately explain to you. Alexander Spiess, MD has devoted his career taking care of injured individuals in all types of Pennsylvania workers' compensation claims. 

Getting injured on the job can be a frightening experience, but Dr. Spiess understands your concerns about cost and downtime, and can help you develop and execute an effective treatment plan that will get you back to work as soon as possible. If you’ve been injured, don’t wait to schedule an appointment with Dr. Spiess at Pittsburgh Hand and Nerve, P.C. today.

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Expert Hand, Wrist & nerve Injury, compartment syndrome, Pressure sore, Burn & Scar workers' compensation Consultations

What is a Work Injury?

A 'work injury' is any injury, medical condition, or disease that is caused by a person's job according to the Pennsylvania Workers' Compensation Act. The Act does not list specific types of injuries, other than the requirement that the condition must be related to the worker's employment. In addition, a work injury also includes occupational diseases and pre-existing conditions that are aggravated by a person's job. This means that everything from broken bones to strains and sprains to latex allergies to hepatitis may be considered a work injury.

When do I Have to Tell My Employer I was Hurt on the Job?

Section 311 of the Workers' Compensation Act requires that notice of an injury be given within twenty-one (21) days after it occurs, or at the latest, within 120 days of the injury. In general, you should tell your supervisor or boss as soon as you are hurt, even if you think it is a minor injury or will go away without requiring medical care.

Do I Have to go to the Company Doctor?

An injured worker only has to treat with a "company doctor" for 90 days from the first visit only if the employer creates a list of at least six designated health care providers, provides written notification of the employee's rights and duties to the employee, and obtains the employee's written acknowledgment that he or she has been informed of these rights and duties. If an employer fails to do this, an injured worker can receive treatment from any doctor or provider.

Work-Related Injury Treatments

At Pittsburgh Hand and Nerve, P.C. we provide cutting-edge orthoplastic care to patients for a wide variety of injuries, including those that may have been sustained at work. As a board-certified Plastic Surgeon with subspecialization in Hand Surgery, Dr. Spiess is expertly trained to offer treatment for peripheral nerve dysfunction, soft tissue wounds and scarring, and musculoskeletal issues throughout the entire body, as they relate to acute traumatic injuries, as well as those that occur in a setting of repetitive motion or overuse.

Pittsburgh Hand and Nerve, P.C. also offers as an option access to a specialized Workers' Compensation Pharmacy (PD Rx), which will handle the processing of the medications (as prescribed by Dr. Spiess), and next day mail deliver the medications to your home.

Dr. Spiess offers work related injury evaluations in his area of expertise over the entire body, and can assess your need for conservative or operative care of your extremity or trunk after a work related injury. As the Division Chief of Hand Surgery in the Department of Plastic Surgery at the University of Pittsburgh, Dr. Spiess has 15 years of experience as an academic and clinical leader in the fields of Hand, Peripheral nerve, and Plastic Surgery.  With his extensive network of experts in other areas of Medicine and Surgery, he can also offer direct referrals to the best clinicians and surgeons for your condition, if needed.

Whether you are an injured worker or an attorney representing your client in a workers’ compensation dispute, reach out to Dr. Spiess at Pittsburgh Hand and Nerve, P.C. for expert assistance in getting the care and compensation that you or your client deserves.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What are the Most Common Work-Related Injuries?

Some of the most common work-related injuries Dr. Spiess sees at his practice include:

  • Wrist Tendinitis (Dequervains) 
  • Nerve Compression (Carpal or Cubital Tunnel)
  • Nerve Crush or Cut Injury
  • Hand, Wrist, Elbow Tendon and Ligament Injury
  • Wounds or Pressure sores
  • Burns and Scars
  • Compartment Syndrome
  • Repetitive Motion Injuries
  • Tennis Elbow
  • Hand or Wrist Osteoarthritis
  • Thoracic Outlet
  • Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Foot drop
  • Thumb and Wrist Sprains and Strains

What are the Options for Processing my Doctor-Prescribed Medications?

Pittsburgh Hand and Nerve, P.C. also offers as an option, access to a specialized Workers' Compensation Pharmacy (PD Rx). which will handle the processing of the medications (as prescribed by Dr. Spiess), and next day mail deliver the medications to your home. After being prescribed a medication by Dr. Spiess, you will be given the option of taking a paper prescription to present to your pharmacy an E-prescription sent to your pharmacy, or an E-prescription sent to our convenient prescription delivery service. Many patients have taken advantage of the convience of the mail delivery service, eliminating one additional hurdle in the pathway to the recovery from your injury.

How Can I Help Prevent Work-Related Injuries? 

In order to avoid injuries on the job, employers and workers need to work together to ensure the safety and wellness of everyone. Some of the best ways to do this include:

  • Knowing and following all OSHA safety guidelines
  • Encouraging regular physicals
  • Being attentive to potential environmental hazards, including trips and slips
  • Enacting an accident prevention program in your workplace
  • Utilizing personal protective equipment (PPE) when necessary
  • Keeping the workplace tidy and addressing all safety hazards immediately
  • Optimizing workspace ergonomics

How Soon can I Return to Work after Treatment?

Each individual is different, and your recovery time will depend on the severity of your injury as well as your unique needs. During your treatment, Dr. Spiess will work with you to develop a timeline that leads to effective results and a long-term recovery. As eager as you may be to get back to work, it’s important that you follow all recommendations and complete physical/occupational therapy after your injury -- if you do not, you may re-injure yourself, leading to an even longer recovery period. Communicate closely with your employer or claim advocate during this process, and refer to your work restrictions as provided by Dr. Spiess whenever you need to.