The employee experienced a sudden onset of right shoulder pain unrelated to his employment in December 2011 and was ultimately diagnosed with a right shoulder rotator cuff tear. The employee underwent surgery in January 2012. The employee treated chiropractically from July 2012 through November 2012 for left shoulder pain related to a fall at home. The employee ceased treatment for his left shoulder by November 2012, and didn’t treat again until July 2013.
In May 2013 the employee sustained an admitted low back injury with radicular symptoms into the left lower extremity. He underwent a discectomy in June 2013. He experienced recurring left leg weakness.
In July 2013 the employee was in his apartment building when he felt his left leg give out and he fell. He sustained a left AC joint separation. An MRI in October 2013 showed a partial tear of the left rotator cuff, described as “posttraumatic contusion rather than reactive arthritic sequelae.”
Dr. Strand performed an IME and found the employee sustained a left shoulder contusion which he attributed to the employee’s chronic shoulder impingement and not an acute injury. He found the proposed surgery unnecessary, no PPD and no need for restrictions for the left shoulder.
The employee filed a claim petition seeking 3% PPD for the left shoulder and the proposed surgery. At hearing, Judge Marshall found the left shoulder condition to be a consequential work injury, arising out of the radicular symptoms from the May 2013 work injury. He found the employee’s testimony to be more credible, and that the chart notes supported the additional 3% rating.