Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Substantial factor: aggravating prior condition

The Commission affirmed an award of 30% PPD for a lumbar fusion, without a separate opinion. The employer lost a hardship hearing demanding medical care, and offered new testimony from Dr. Cantrell after a L5-s1 fusion disputing whether claimant's accident was a substantial factor in his condition. The original hardship found the employer liable in the 2002 accident for aggravating a previous asymptomatic degenerative condition. In the final hearing, a different ALJ found the employer had the burden to show "additional significant evidence" to disturb the earlier findings on causation, and the new opinon disputed substantial factor but providing a rating. Kinnikin v Triad Development, DOLIR 2-4-11.

ALJ Gorman
Atty: Bollwert, Hendershot, Waganer
Experts: Cantrell, Volarich, Coyle, Cantrell, England
Treater: Kennedy