Millions of Americans have high blood pressure, also known as hypertension. It is a potentially deadly condition that can cause heart attacks, strokes and other dangerous medical complications. One of the known causes of high blood pressure is stress, which is inherent to many jobs, ranging from law enforcement positions to production jobs with high quotas and tight deadlines.
Hypertension can be treated with medication and lifestyle changes that reduce stress or other factors that can raise blood pressure. This kind of treatment may be covered by South Carolina workers’ compensation benefits if a worker’s high blood pressure was caused by job conditions.
In many cases, the cause of hypertension cannot be medically pinpointed. Some employers or their insurance companies see this as reason to challenge workers’ compensation claims based on high blood pressure.
The workers’ compensation attorneys at Joye Law Firm can help if you face this kind of opposition to a legitimate workers’ comp claim over hypertension. We can work for you to obtain the benefits you deserve.
Call Joye Law Firm now or use this online contact form to schedule a free discussion of your legal options.
Causes of High Blood Pressure
High blood pressure usually has no symptoms unless the patient suffers from “secondary hypertension,” which is a type of high blood pressure that is brought on by another illness, such as kidney problems. Another condition, called “malignant hypertension,” is a medical emergency with sudden, extremely high blood pressure and such symptoms as blurred vision, chest pain, headache, nausea and mental problems (anxiety, confusion, lethargy, etc.).
“Primary” or “essential” hypertension develops gradually over several years and is usually first identified in a routine medical exam. There are several factors that may contribute to primary hypertension, including genetics and race (it is more prevalent among African Americans), obesity, a sodium-heavy diet, smoking, drinking and stress.
Stress is a physical, mental and emotional response to a challenging event. Everyone experiences stress, and we all deal with it differently. A proper amount of stress can even be helpful. Stress that makes you alert to a threat and motivates you is positive stress. But chronic stress – stress that is continual – is negative stress.
Chronic stress puts you at increased risk of numerous health problems, including:
- Digestive problems
- Heart disease
- Sleep problems
- Weight gain
- Memory and concentration impairment
Stress in the Workplace and Workers’ Compensation for Hypertension
Stress factors in jobs include physical demand, exposure to danger, responsibility for other people or for large amounts of money, travel, public contact or public scrutiny, deadlines and production quotas.
Among the most stressful jobs in America are:
- Air traffic controller
- Commercial airline pilot
- Construction foreman
- Corrections officer
- Emergency medical technician
- Iron worker
- Military service
- Newspaper reporter
- Police officer
- Public relations executive
- Senior corporate executive
- Taxi driver
The link between job-related stress and high blood pressure is understood by medical professionals and others. The poor diet related to life on the road necessitated by job duties and the lack of exercise that results from long hours at a work desk are also recognized as contributors to primary hypertension.
If your employer has challenged your claim to workers’ compensation benefits for hypertension, you should contact an experienced attorney as soon as possible. A lawyer experienced with South Carolina’s workers’ compensation system can help you document the connection between your occupational duties and/or work environment and your high blood pressure.
Work-Related High Blood Pressure? Talk to a Workers’ Comp Lawyer Today