Heart Disorders & California Workers' Compensation
Heart disorders, including cardiovascular disease, take more adult lives in the U.S. every year than any other disease, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Exposure to certain environmental conditions is known to cause or aggravate heart disease and other heart disorders, and the conditions most likely to cause a heart disorder are all conditions that appear in many southern California workplaces.
Workers’ compensation benefits for a heart disorder can be complicated to obtain. California’s workers’ compensation law allows benefits to be paid when an on-the-job injury occurs, whether it’s due to a one-time event or a series of repeated exposures to the same injurious situation. Since heart disorders typically have large genetic components and may go for years without being diagnosed, and since the link between heart disorders and all types of workplace conditions is unclear, proving that a heart disorder is mainly the result of an on-the-job incident can be difficult in some cases.
Workplace Risks Causing Heart Disorders
Workplace conditions that can lead to the development of a heart disorder include what’s listed below:
- Trace metal exposure – Inhaling or ingesting trace metals used in the workplace can cause both heart disorders and conditions that lead to heart disorders. The type of damage done depends on the metals the worker is exposed to. Lead, cobalt, antimony, and beryllium can all cause heart disorders.
- Chemical exposure – Chemicals other than metals can cause serious or even deadly heart disorders. Long-term carbon monoxide exposure, for instance, damages the walls of the heart. Solvents like carbon disulfide or halogenated hydrocarbons can cause arrhythmia or palpitations.
- Noise – Long-term exposure to loud noises causes a rise in blood pressure, which over time can lead to heart disorders, according to the CDC. Studies have found that workers suffering from job-related hearing loss are more likely to have cardiac problems related to the noise stress as well.
- Mental stress – Long hours, tight deadlines, equipment breakdowns, difficult co-workers, and other stresses common in the workplace have all been shown to play a role in the development of heart disorders, according to the CDC. Working overtime in particular has been linked to an increase in both accidents on the job and heart-related conditions, according to a 2005 study in Occupational and Environmental Medicine.
- Vibration and heat – The link between exposure to vibration or extreme temperatures and heart disorders is not clear. These conditions do, however, place stress on the body, prompting the CDC to call for additional research of the link between physical stressors and heart disorders.
Los Angeles Lawyers Who Take Your Case Seriously
Tracing the source of a heart disorder back to a workplace accident, injury, or condition isn’t always easy. When you’re fighting to recover from a cardiac event or a heart-related surgery, determining what happened can seem even more overwhelming. Attorney Kenton Koszdin is dedicated to helping those who suffer heart disorders and other injuries due to work get the workers’ compensation benefits they need. Call the Law Offices of Kenton Koszdin today for a free, confidential consultation. We’ll ensure that your rights are protected.