My question involves workers compensation law for the state of: Oregon
I was injured on the job in December. I was hurt by a patient with alzheimers, when he was having an episode. I went to my doctor and she put me on pain meds, and had an MRI done. I started PT later that week. I did start to improve, and after being on PT for about 6 weeks, my doctor agreed to put me back to work doing modified work in the office. I work as a CNA and could not return to my regular duties yet. I have been having to be creative with pain management, due to the fact I am allergic to codeine, and most meds make me deathly ill. So I took ibuprophen, and Lidoderm patches, a tens unit, and heating pad. I was gradually working at strenghtening my knees, and other body parts to take the load off my back.
I finally returned to limited duty, and a partial patient load about 8 weeks or so into the recovery. I was doing okay, than I had a full case load dumped on me. I drive for a living, and between long distances of driving, and the patient load was just too large, and while working with another patient I was injured again. My back was hurting like crazy again. My doctor said I needed a co-worker with me for 2 weeks. Unfortunitely I also ended up having more people added to my caseload, making it even larger. I finished my week in extreme pain. By the following Monday, my back was so bad I could do nothing. I again finished the day the best I could, and went to the doctor. I was put off duty again, and my doctor said she figured I would not be able to do this type of job anymore. She requested a second opinion. I got that. Now I have to have a nerve conduction test. The second doctor said the MRI showed I had a mild amount of DDD, and bulging disks, he said it was normal. He suggested injections, than reconsidered when I told him I had diabetes, and he said he didn't want to do injections. He also said if my back ever quieted down from having spasms and pain, he would suggest aggressive PT. I had a hard time doing the PT I was doing before I went back to work. What does he mean by aggressive?
Now when I talk to the workman comp. rep. she always mentions about me having DDD and damage caused by age. I have told her that I had no back issues before the injury, and I wouldn't have for many years, if ever. Should I put a time limit for the PT, and than get a lawyer if things don't improve? I have had to get a handicap sticker because when I walk my lower body feels weird. Like my body is not working like it should. And do bulging discs mean I am getting older, or could it be caused by the injury?
I could use some answers.