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I had an accident at work. I tripped over a chair up on the second floor ina workspace outside normal working conditions. Sort of a storage/makeshift data closet. After I tripped over the chair I went down hard and fast. As I fell I was pinned against an air conditioning unit which transferred my wieght and energy to my foot, which was twisted. Crunch. I must have gone into shock immediately because I was shaking a lot and I felt only a dull deep pain. When I tried to stand it felt like I was standing on a broken bottle. I was sick to my stomach. I immediately called my boss and reported it to the establishment I was working at. I went to hospital and they took xrays and told me I had a sprain. I was given a motrin, crutches, and an ace bandage. 

Oh yeah, I should mention that before I got into the hospital I was in the parking area and was informed by valet that I had to pay to park. So I had to go across the street to the bank to get cash. Unfortunately I had to walk/limp on injured foot from my work van, up and down a flight of stairs before making my way back to the hospital...

So back to my story. After I was released from the hospital I drove back to my shop to pick up my truck to drive home. No sooner had I parked when my phone rang. It was the hospital. They said I needed to return right away because they said they believed I had a possible heel fracture. So then I called my boss, and drove back to hospital. I waited... Finally I went in for a C.T. Scan. And then waited in the lobby for hours....

Frankly I was angry. The pain was bad and getting worse. I went to the front desk and let them have it. 7 hours, a motrin, an entire hospital, xrays, a c.t. Scan and no one could help me with all of their recources at their disposal... Funny, in 5 minutes I had a team of nurses and a doctor escort me to a room where I was informed I had several fractures, one of them a lisfranc. I was given vicodin and. A splint. I need to add that these are doctors, nurses etc... Professionals. When my foot was wrapped in ace bandages, I was instructed to leave everything on until I saw a orthopedic surgeon... I am telling you this because after I got home my wife went and got the prescription filled and caredfor me. i suppose the shock was wearing off because the pain was skyrocketing. I was injured at 9:45am. By 11:00pm I was in so much agony I was crying. Actually I was sobbing. Gawd, the pain was so intense. My family took it hard. My sons had nevermseen me like this. My youngest was crying, deeply emphatic to my pain. I told him to take the ace wraps off because I couldnt handle the pain anylonger... I just didnt know whatnto do. After the wraps were removed the pain cut in half. You see, these professionals hadnt taken the time to think that my foot was going to swell. My foot grew right before our eyes. Trippled in size. In ten minutes I was out like a light. It was 5am...

My questions; If anyone can help me understand, I would greatly appreciate it.

My emplyer has workers comp insurance. I picked the doctor whois treating me. My employers insurance is paying all medical as well as paying me 2/3's my regular pay Which is great. I am greatfull to have the help. I had surgery a month ago. I had a plate installed to correct the lisfranc along with some screws. I have developed pressure sores which if you dont know are disgusting blisters that have popped up all over the bottom of my foot. Doc says its normal as sometimes the swelling forces our bodies to deal with pressures in strange ways. My doctor is cool. Very precise and has excellent bedside manners.

So... Obvioulsy this has affected my life very significantly. I have read hundreds of pages of cases and outcomes forpeople like us who have suffered this horrible break. My wife says the insurance company will "award" me a settlement or financial outcome to meet the needs of now and the future. How do I know if it is enough or fair???

I was a very active man. My job is extremely physical and I went to gym 5-7 days a week. hiking, swimming, etc. etc... It is even likely I won't ever be able to do my job effectively again... So what happens then when I am as well as I will be???

It has been months and castis off. I am now in a boot. I noticed three days ago that I cannot bend my big toe andthe one next to it. Holy sh@t. Scary...

help help help....

Steve W.

Torrance, California

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Hi Winchester,

I'm sorry you got hurt but am glad that you got it treated and had insurance.

Your initial care seems to have been "rushed."  It sounds like someone either didn't read or misread the x-ray.  It happens, moreso in an ER setting.

Actually, the professionals knew your foot was going to swell.  We often do bandage tissues to prevent that from happening.  Swelling can often make the damage worse.  When you injure your body it sends fluids to the site to carry increased oxygen and blood to help it heal.  They should have told you to elevate the leg.  

Personally, I find it ridiculous for you to assume that you are going to get an "award" from the insurance company.  You tripped over a chair, why is it your employers fault?  Accept responsibility for your own actions.  You are lucky that they paid the medical.

If you can't continue in that field find another.  Lots of people have suffered worse and moved on with their lives.  You may have to make adjustments.

Good luck.

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Thank you for taking the time to reply. All advice is welcome. I use therm award loosely as it is the word I see used in most articles I educate myself with. Switching careers after 22 years is not very realistic. My particular field requires physical demands that most wouldn't bother with. Those demands come with responsibility that should definitely be covered if I am no longer able to assume my career. Award may be a negative in this case however I do not agree with your assumptions. And after all the college, constant updates of credentials and personal time and energy to staying innovative does not remove liability in the case of accident rather insurance is in place for this very reason. If I put it on the line, the company assumes that possibility as well. If it were my company and one mine was injured, I would make darn sure that individual was well compensated for their service. Again, thats the whole point. Taking care of someone who has taken care of you is not only ethical, it is just. As a former employer I also assumed that risk. So for the sake of argument we will change the word award to compensation. Good day sir...

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