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Old 11.06.2017, 17:18
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How long for a professional accident? (give your opinion)

6 days ago I had an accident, where one of my fingers was pressed between two flat pieces of steel. The finger is intact, nothing is broken, but the force was enough to pierce the fingernail and push some internals of the finger on the outside. The finger was pressed between two flat surfaces!
I work in construction, requiring me to be able to fully use both hands (including closing both hands with full force).
If you were the doctor examining the situation, how long of an inability to work would you prescribe? 1 day? 1 week? 1 month?
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Old 11.06.2017, 17:20
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Re: How long for a professional accident? (give your opinion)

do you seriously expect an answer on an internet forum?
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Old 11.06.2017, 17:22
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Re: How long for a professional accident? (give your opinion)

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6 days ago I had an accident, where one of my fingers was pressed between two flat pieces of steel. The finger is intact, nothing is broken, but the force was enough to pierce the fingernail and push some internals of the finger on the outside. The finger was pressed between two flat surfaces!
I work in construction, requiring me to be able to fully use both hands (including closing both hands with full force).
If you were the doctor examining the situation, how long of an inability to work would you prescribe? 1 day? 1 week? 1 month?
Ask your doctor. Franly, it sounds like you're looking for some arm chair opinions to justify extra time off work, but the doc's opinion is the only one that counts.
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Old 11.06.2017, 17:25
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Re: How long for a professional accident? (give your opinion)

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Ask your doctor. Franly, it sounds like you're looking for some arm chair opinions to justify extra time off work, but the doc's opinion is the only one that counts.
So if the doc says that I can fly, should I jump off a building?
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Old 11.06.2017, 17:33
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Re: How long for a professional accident? (give your opinion)

If we say you can fly, should you jump of a building?

Btw, get well soon!
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Old 11.06.2017, 17:33
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Re: How long for a professional accident? (give your opinion)

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Ask your doctor. Franly, it sounds like you're looking for some arm chair opinions to justify extra time off work, but the doc's opinion is the only one that counts.
Agree. The Ops Doctor will assess the kind of work, the limitations on being able to carry it out due to the injury, and write the Arztzeugnis accordingly. Also not sure why the question is being asked here.
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Old 11.06.2017, 17:37
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Re: How long for a professional accident? (give your opinion)

After 6 days, I'd imagine that the finger got swollen, the nail fell off, and maybe the excess blood has drained?

At that point, you should be able to work again.

But I'm no doctor
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Old 11.06.2017, 17:42
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Re: How long for a professional accident? (give your opinion)

I have been in the situation of having been given a doctor's certificate for a week, when I knew for certain that the healing/recovery process would take longer. That was frightening, as I didn't see how anyone could expect me to return to work after such a short time.

I did not know then that sometimes, doctors prescribe a short period of sick-leave, and then extend it as necessary, week by week. Partly this is to ensure that the patient (who needs ongoing treatment) does, in fact, return for the next round of examinations. Partly it is because people recover at different rates, and being told that one is out-of-action for the next few months can be a blow to one's confidence, and a doctor needs to be alert, and if possible cause no new psychological harm. Partly it is to avoid facilitating a patient's would-be disability, especially not by sending the message that the patient's case is less hopeful than the patient himself had perceived it. A doctor who does not yet know the patient may choose to err on the side of caution.

With your common-sense experience and some googling, try to figure out how many weeks you think your recovery is really likely to take. Then, at the next doctor's appointment, ask him/her for a detailed prognosis. Keep your question about the healing. Ask for the steps in the likely healing process, until you will regain full functioning. And how long the whole thing will take.

Only once you have been given this information, ask how it works with doctor's certificates to give to the employer. My employer had specifically asked for a doctor's certificate to cover the entire likely duration, so that they could plan for a substitute while I was away. When I told the doctor that after a few weeks, she changed her way of doing things: instead of giving me a new week-long certificate each week, she issued one for a whole month. I very much doubt she would haved done that from the start, despite my employer's request: she needed to get to know me first, and my injury.
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Old 11.06.2017, 17:43
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Re: How long for a professional accident? (give your opinion)

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Agree. The Ops Doctor will assess the kind of work, the limitations on being able to carry it out due to the injury, and write the Arztzeugnis accordingly. Also not sure why the question is being asked here.
Because the doc gave me just 6 days. Tomorrow I should be able to work according to the doc, but I still feel a lot of pain, the finger is still swollen and I still can't use my hand.
Having never had a similar injury in my life, I did not know the necessary time to heal and I initially believed the doc. So instead of going to another doc, I told my employer that the leave would be just 6 days.
The employer expects me to be on the job tomorrow, but if I break the promise I believe that I will be terminated..
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Old 11.06.2017, 17:45
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Re: How long for a professional accident? (give your opinion)

I worked in construction out in Australia. Someone dropped their end of a pile of steel sheeting we were both carrying.
I cut open my forearm.

Luckily the doctors' surgery was across the road. I got stitched up and was back at work twenty minutes later. I didn't think this was a big deal.

So, one day off is probably pushing it. How about just the afternoon?
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Old 11.06.2017, 17:45
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Re: How long for a professional accident? (give your opinion)

Then go back to the doctor and say you are still in pain - and/or ask the employer for tasks that allow you to rest the afflicted part.
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Old 11.06.2017, 17:48
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Re: How long for a professional accident? (give your opinion)

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The employer expects me to be on the job tomorrow, but if I break the promise I believe that I will be terminated..
In that case, phone your boss (or whomever distributes the work-load) today, Sunday, to explain this. Tell him that you will call your doctor again first thing tomorrow morning, Monday, to make a new appointment.

Ask the foreman/boss, today, whether he needs you to have that medical appointment today, rather than waiting for your own doctor when businesses are open on Monday. If he says yes, then go to a walk-in clinic or hospital today, Sunday. In that case, if you have any documentation from your own doctor, take it with you.
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Old 11.06.2017, 17:50
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Re: How long for a professional accident? (give your opinion)

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I worked in construction out in Australia. Someone dropped their end of a pile of steel sheeting we were both carrying.
I cut open my forearm.

Luckily the doctors' surgery was across the road. I got stitched up and was back at work twenty minutes later. I didn't think this was a big deal.

So, one day off is probably pushing it. How about just the afternoon?
A cut is different. I suffered many, many cuts and like you did, I just patched it up and was back to work in 10 minutes. However, this is not the same situation.
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Old 11.06.2017, 17:53
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Re: How long for a professional accident? (give your opinion)

The point is that each injury is different from every other injury, as is each person's healing process. Therefore: phone your boss today, and get to a doctor today or tomorrow.
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Old 11.06.2017, 18:00
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Re: How long for a professional accident? (give your opinion)

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Because the doc gave me just 6 days. Tomorrow I should be able to work according to the doc, but I still feel a lot of pain, the finger is still swollen and I still can't use my hand.
Having never had a similar injury in my life, I did not know the necessary time to heal and I initially believed the doc. So instead of going to another doc, I told my employer that the leave would be just 6 days.
The employer expects me to be on the job tomorrow, but if I break the promise I believe that I will be terminated..
I understand - had at least one similar situation, especially when I had a complex bone break. Doropfiz is right - don't be afraid to get it assessed again by your doctor.

I also know the kind of stress and expectations that we are all under at work (as an employee), and it can be really difficult to understand why an immediate line-manager can be intolerant to sick-leave.

Fingers crossed (sorry, not appropriate in this case). But talk to both your boss & your doctor openly, and things have a high-chance of working-out.
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Old 11.06.2017, 18:01
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Re: How long for a professional accident? (give your opinion)

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.... or ask the employer for tasks that allow you to rest the afflicted part.
That's a good point! Certainly first see your doctor again. And if you are afraid of losing your job, then ask the doctor what kinds of work you could still do. Your employer might prefer to have you at work on light duty (if that is, in fact, reasonable at all given your injury) than not seeing you.

It seems to me that, if you are wanting to regain the use of your hand, and wanting to keep your job, you are going to have to work in close cooperation with the doctor and your employer.

By the way, here's some more advice: Document everything.
If your injury is short-lived, it won't matter much how you do things, but if this is something that may drag on, then get your paperwork clear from the start.
Obtain a so-called Accident Number. Usually, the medical insurance will issue this.
Write down how and when each step happened, whom you saw when, keep a log of today's phonecall to your boss and write down what he said, take photos, keep photocopies of your doctor's certificates, understand to what extent and until when your wages will continue to be paid.
Make a file or book and keep everything to do with this accident together.
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Old 11.06.2017, 18:10
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Re: How long for a professional accident? (give your opinion)

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That's a good point! Certainly first see your doctor again. And if you are afraid of losing your job, then ask the doctor what kinds of work you could still do. Your employer might prefer to have you at work on light duty (if that is, in fact, reasonable at all given your injury) than not seeing you.

It seems to me that, if you are wanting to regain the use of your hand, and wanting to keep your job, you are going to have to work in close cooperation with the doctor and your employer.

By the way, here's some more advice: Document everything.
If your injury is short-lived, it won't matter much how you do things, but if this is something that may drag on, then get your paperwork clear from the start.
Obtain a so-called Accident Number. Usually, the medical insurance will issue this.
Write down how and when each step happened, whom you saw when, keep a log of today's phonecall to your boss and write down what he said, take photos, keep photocopies of your doctor's certificates, understand to what extent and until when your wages will continue to be paid.
Make a file or book and keep everything to do with this accident together.
I did, I offered to work with just 1 hand (on day 1!), but the employer refused.
What should I tell the employer when he asks me when will I be back to work?
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Old 11.06.2017, 18:11
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Re: How long for a professional accident? (give your opinion)

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6 days ago I had an accident, where one of my fingers was pressed between two flat pieces of steel. The finger is intact, nothing is broken, but the force was enough to pierce the fingernail and push some internals of the finger on the outside. The finger was pressed between two flat surfaces!
I work in construction, requiring me to be able to fully use both hands (including closing both hands with full force).
Of course, there's also the question of liability if this was a professional accident. But there will be other EFers who might be able to comment on this.
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Old 11.06.2017, 18:13
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Re: How long for a professional accident? (give your opinion)

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IWhat should I tell the employer when he asks me when will I be back to work?
Do not wait until the employer asks you. Be pro-active, show that you are a responsible team member, and call him!

Call him TODAY and say that you are in pain and cannot use your hand. Inform him that you do not know when you will be back at work.

Tell him today that you will not be at work tomorrow. That gives him a chance to call up someone else to work in your stead, at least for tomorrow, or to re-distribute the tasks across other staff members.
Tell your boss, TODAY, and that you will contact your doctor as soon as his/her practice is open in the morning, and that you will phone him again after your appoinment.
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Old 11.06.2017, 18:14
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Re: How long for a professional accident? (give your opinion)

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So if the doc says that I can fly, should I jump off a building?
It would save a lot of time, certainly.
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