Stories abound, of course, concerning the worker who claims to suffer from Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, or from similar medical conditions which are often generically placed under the rubric of “repetitive stress injuries” — chronic conditions of pain, numbness, tingling, and radiating pain and numbness often emanating from extremities and impacting one’s ability to engage in fine dexterous movement and manipulations — often limiting movement and abilities upon computer work, file handling, but also into areas which require mechanical repair, electronic technician work, Airways Systems work, work which requires the fine manipulative use of fingers, hands, etc.
They are real injuries and medical conditions, and should not be dismissed lightly. Use and overuse over time, or sometimes resulting from a specific traumatic injury, can result in the devastating impact which prevents one from performing one or more of the essential elements of one’s job. For Federal and Postal employees either under FERS or CSRS, Carpal Tunnel Symdrome (CTS) and Repetitive Stress Injuries are a viable basis to file for Federal Disability Retirement benefits under FERS or CSRS. When CTS surgery (“release”), hand splints, and physical therapy have failed to alleviate the chronic nature of the medical condition, it may be time to consider filing with the Office of Personnel Management.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire