Hand & Wrist Center of Houston Home If you suspect broken bones, dislocated joints, lacerated tendons, lacerated nerves, infection, or have an open wound below the elbow, then call us immediately.
 
OCCUPATIONAL MEDICINE


The Steps Involved
  • Returning to Work
  • Maximum Medical Improvement
  • Impairment Rating
  • Functional Capacity Evaluation
The People Involved
  • Adjusters
  • Case Managers
  • Safety Officers
  • Occupational Doctors and Nurses
  • The Treating Doctor
Returning to Work

Our goal is to rehabilitate patients well enough to allow them to return to a productive earning capacity for themselves and their families. Some patients will be able to return to their original jobs. Other patients may require vocational retraining or the assistance of the Texas Rehabilitation Commission. At the end of each office visit the doctor must fill out a work status form putting the patient either off work, on restricted duty, or back to full duty. The choice of work status is based foremost on what is safe for the patient's medical condition, but in most cases some form of work is possible even if it is only clerical. One exception to this general rule is post-surgical patients who must be off work specifically to perform an intensive every-hour-on-the-hour motion therapy program to prevent permanent stiffness and loss of function. Otherwise, the work status is advanced as the patient's medical condition permits with a goal of reaching full duty status as soon as possible. Most injuries and surgeries set in motion a typical three month cycle of the body repairing itself with only strength and endurance conditioning remaining after that.

Maximum Medical Improvement

Maximum Medical Improvement (MMI) is a time that is reached near the end of treatment for work related injuries. The doctor usually declares that MMI has been reached when there is no surgery planned, the therapy techniques are not going to be changed, and the tissues are not expected to heal any further. MMI does not mean that the patient is expected to feel fully cured, and patients may still have a number of symptoms.

Impairment Rating

The impairment rating is a required process at the end of treatment for some work related conditions. The rating is a percentage number. The number is meant to measure how much the worker as a whole person has been permanently damaged by the result of the medical condition. The rating does not measure symptoms such as pain; it only counts abnormalities in the patient that can be physically measured with numbers. These numbers come strictly from a national set of charts and tables published by the American Medical Association and cannot be influenced in any way by your doctor or therapist.

Functional Capacity Evaluation

A functional capacity evaluation (FCE) is a test of the patient's capabilities to do specific types of movements using various amounts of force for periods of time. After the FCE is completed, a report is generated on how well the patient performed. This report is useful as a guide to help the doctor and employer determine what type of work activities the patient may be capable of doing at that moment in time. An FCE is usually performed at the beginning and end of a conditioning program.

Adjusters

The adjuster is a person employed by the insurance company who is responsible for overseeing that the proper care is given to an injured worker. The adjuster also monitors the patient's work status and follows the rules set by the Texas Workers Compensation Commission. If the adjuster is concerned about something, he or she has the authority to send the patient to another doctor for a one time required medical examination or a second opinion regarding the ongoing treatment. The adjuster also has the authority to deny certain aspects of the treatment that do not relate directly to the specific condition being treated. Workers' compensation medicine is different than group health coverage. Only specific body areas or conditions are authorized for treatment. Even if other problems exist, they cannot be addressed under the work related insurance plan.

Case Managers

The case manager is a representative assigned to the patient to ensure that the appropriate care is given. The workers' compensation system is confusing to many patients. Case managers are able to answer many but not all questions. They help in the transition back to work, in vocational rehabilitation decisions, and in coordination of various diagnostic and treatment services.

Safety Officers

Safety officers work to prevent injuries form occurring in the first place. When an injury does occur, the safety officer ensures that the worker receives prompt and complete medical attention. Once treatment for the injury is underway, the safety officer will coordinate with the doctor to determine a safe job position for the worker to return to at each stage of healing.

Occupational Doctors and Nurses

Occupational doctors and nurses are experts in occupational injuries and conditions. They are often both the first and the last medical professionals to treat the patient. They have an excellent understanding of how the stresses of the job duties interact with the healing of the medical condition. They give valuable guidance to the surgeon in determining a safe work status and in the timing of return to work.

The Treating Doctor

Each patient in the workers' compensation system must have an assigned treating doctor after 60 days. The treating doctor can be changed later by filling out a form for approval by the commission. The treating doctor is ultimately in charge of determining work status, maximum medical improvement, the impairment rating, and what treatments will be administered or withheld. The surgeon will not always be the treating doctor.
 
 
 
Back to Patient Information
 
 


  • The staff is nice and everyone is up on the treatment. I feel confident that I am getting the best care and am glad I came here. - 10/30/17
  • Dr. Henry was very informative about the treatment and staff was pleasant. - 01/11/18
  • very helpful. staff was very helpful and outstanding. Dr. Henry explained everything to me - 06/19/18
  • The staff and the Dr. are very helpful and understanding .I have not yet seen a better staff like this office . I will recommend any one here . - 11/06/17
  • great doctor - 05/23/18
  • excellent! dr & staff! - 06/14/17
  • thank you - 10/16/17
  • Very efficient practice - 10/19/17
  • Dr. Henry and his staff are amazing! I was able to get an urgent new patient appointment immediately with surgery that same afternoon. Dr. Henry does an excellent and thorough job explaining my injury and the healing process. Very impressed with his plan of early mobility and physical therapy, which helped restore my function back to normal within 8 weeks of surgery. I would 100% recommend Dr. Henry and his staff! Very pleased and grateful for his help. - 03/23/18
  • dr henry does an excellent job of explaining the problem and solution, seems extremely competent - 02/07/18
  • very good team work, best clinic - 06/21/17
  • Thank you for sewing me back together and guiding me through my recovery!!! - 05/15/18
  • I appreciate the expertise and experience of Dr. Henry!!! I know I had the BEST hand surgeon!!! - 05/02/18
  • no complaints hand is coming along very well - 11/06/17
  • Great job your staff is the best,thank you &GOD Bless all of you! - 06/15/18
  • love the circus de sole dvd. everything was amazing. rehab was the best too. - 02/23/18
  • Outstanding service and results - 10/30/17
  • I was very impressed with how I was treated by the doctor as well as the Medical assistant. All my questioned were answered and I was treated with care and respect. Luis was Awesome! Doctor Henry was very informative. I will recommend him to friends and family - 06/09/17
  • the whole group was very good, I had an excellent experience. - 11/09/17
  • Very nice staff and surgeon. Thumb looks good now after surgery, hopefully thumb continues to heal and stays healed. Thank you - 01/30/18
  • Dr. Henry was able to salvage my hand to make it usable again. I have already sent my Father here and he no longer has any pain in his wrist. - 11/13/17
  • all excellent care - 07/12/17
  • :) - 06/01/17
  • Dr. Henry is a tremendous doctor! - 05/22/18
  • an experience beyond expectation - 10/06/17
  • outstanding knowledge and gets you into the hospital if needed the same. - 02/09/18
  • Dr. Mark Henry is a true healer; the finest most competent doctor I've ever encountered. I am forever grateful to Dr. Henry and the entire staff for saving my finger and facilitating my complete recovery with grace and seriousness of intent. Thank you. - 01/10/18
  • best place for treatment of hand and wrist problems. Dr. Henry was recommended to me by a friend who is a medical care professional. - 10/06/17
  • With the severity of my injury I am amazed at how functional my wrist is with the amazing team work shown at the office. From the very start the service and care have been outstanding!! I can't thank everyone enough! - 02/23/18
  • you were very good, thank you very much - 05/17/18
  • Great Doctor and staff. Luis is a wonderful asset to the staff - 12/18/17
  • MD was very thorough and spent a good amount of time with the patient (me). MD had good bedside manners which you do not see from a lot of doctors nowadays. He also made sure everything was understood and that I was given a chance to ask questions or address any concerns I had. Everyone was courteous and professional. Thank you for making mu visit a pleasant one. - 05/02/18
  • every body was excelent - 01/09/18
  • The staffs here was GREAT!!!! - 06/21/17
  • Thank you for repairing my injury and being kind in the process. - 01/10/18
  • Dr. Henry and his staff are phenomenal. Dr. Henry has a gift for not only treating health issues extremely effectively, but he is extremely thorough and very efficient at communication and explaining everything he is doing and all of clearly outlining your options for future procedures. - 05/11/18
  • Dr. Henry gave me my wrist back!!! Thank you Dr. Henry!!! - 07/10/17
  • Very happy I came here for the surgery, etc. - 06/09/17
  • I am really happy with my experience. I always knew what was going on and over time got to know the staff based on how many times I've been here. Most importantly, I feel I got the right treatment for my injury. - 10/19/17
  • The doctor and staff are the best I have ever had. Very professionalism at its best. - 11/15/17
  • very confortable,Dr. Henrry very professional and very friendly staff - 12/05/17
  • every thing was really great - 10/19/17
  • I couldn't be more pleased with the level of service I received while in Dr. Henry's care. The level of detail in which my injury was explained and resolved, and the level of competency that was displayed throughout the healing was truly outstanding. - 01/30/18










Site maintained by Dan Cutts© Copyright 2018 Hand and Wrist Center of Houston