Maritime Shoulder Injuries

Working aboard ships, barges, and fishing vessels frequently leads to debilitating shoulder injuries. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, shoulder injuries caused workers to miss a median of 26 days of work during 2014—more than any other body part.

Maritime Shoulder Injury Causes

Shoulder injuries are typically the result of either a sudden impact or repetitive motions. Some of the most common causes of these ailments include:

  • Winches exerting force on the arms and shoulders
  • Repetitive overhead stretching and pulling motions
  • Slips and falls on wet surfaces
  • Lack of proper safety training
  • Improper repetitive lifting
  • Hyperextension of the arm or shoulder caused by awkward movements in cramped spaces

Common Maritime Shoulder Injuries

Typical shoulder injuries experienced by seamen include:

  • Tendonitis. Tendonitis is inflammation of tendons in the shoulder, and is typically caused by repetitive lifting or throwing motions.
  • Broken or fractured bones. Bones in the shoulder area may be broken or fractured when a worker falls, or when he’s struck by a falling object.
  • Arthritis. This swelling of the shoulder joint is typically caused by repetitive motions.
  • Dislocated shoulder. The shoulder becomes dislocated when the upper arm bone separates from the joint. A partial or full dislocation may be caused by overuse of the shoulder joint, but it can also occur suddenly due to an accident.

Treatment of Shoulder Injuries

Injured workers should seek medical attention as soon as possible. The treating physician will likely consider a patient’s medical history, and ask questions regarding his work conditions and the nature of the shoulder injury. He’ll complete an examination to determine the best course of treatment, which may include medication, surgery, physical therapy, bed rest, and lifestyle changes.

You Need an Attorney

If you’ve experienced a shoulder injury while you employed as a seaman, you may be entitled to compensation for your medical and rehabilitation costs, lost wages, disability, and pain and suffering.

You need an experienced attorney to help you receive the compensation you deserve. To discuss your claim, contact the law offices of Steve M. Lee, P.C., by using the form on this page.

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