Tuesday, October 22, 2013

SIF defense fails based on inconsistent medical history

The Commission affirms an award of permanent total disability against the Second Injury Fund for a 66-year old corrections officer who alleges her right knee popped when she twisted suddenly after she heard a loud noise descending steps.  Simon v St. Louis County, 2013 MO WCLR Lexis 202 (Oct 11, 2013). 

Claimant asserts the accident tore her meniscus and made her chondromalacia symptomatic.
The Commission rejected defenses of causation and considered the SIF's expert documented an incomplete medical history which did not fully describe a twisting episode.  The defense was "undermined by his [Dr. Nogalski's]  failure (for whatever reason) to obtain and/or to record an accurate history of injury."  Claimant had treatment  involving the leg knee and prior right leg issues related to a heart condition.  The SIF did not dispute the occurrence of an accident.  The employer settled the case prior to the hearing. 

ALJ:  Lane
Atty:  Kendrick, Hudson
Experts:  Volarich, Nogalski