Appeal from order of Court of Common Pleas of Lebanon County, Sept. T., 1968, No. 363, in case of Warren A. Wolfe v. Wm. J. Burns International Detective Agency et al.
Bernard A. Buzgon, with him Davis, Katz, Buzgon & Davis, for appellants.
Allen H. Krause, for appellee.
Wright, P. J., Watkins, Montgomery, Jacobs, Hoffman, Spaulding, and Cercone, JJ. Opinion by Spaulding, J.
[ 215 Pa. Super. Page 383]
This is an appeal from an order of the Court of Common Pleas of Lebanon County reversing the decision of the Workmen's Compensation Board in a claim for compensation. Warren A. Wolfe, appellant, alleged he sustained back injuries on February 8, 1965, in the course of his employment by William J. Burns International Detective Agency, when he was struck in the back and shoulders and knocked to the floor by loaded cartons falling from a stack. He further averred his back injuries recurred on December 2, 1965, when,
[ 215 Pa. Super. Page 384]
again in the course of his employment, he bent over, and was struck by a sharp pain in his back which resulted in a herniated disc operation on February 18, 1966. The findings of fact of the referee were unanimously affirmed by the Board wherein they found appellant was entitled to compensation for only two days as a result of the injuries sustained on February 8, 1965. They concluded that no causal connection existed between that accident and the herniated or ruptured disc suffered by appellant on December 2, 1965.
Appellant has a long history of injuries to his back. In 1960, he was operated on for a herniated disc. In 1963 and in 1964, he underwent further diagnoses, treatments, and operations for a recurrent herniated disc.
Appellant was treated the day following the February 8 accident by Dr. A. L. Achenbach, an osteopathic physician. Appellant visited this doctor on two other occasions, and returned to his regular work on February 17, 1965. Before discharging appellant Dr. Achenbach advised him to secure additional medical help, specifically, suggesting Doctors Reigh and Johnson, prominent neurosurgeons. In a report filed by Dr. Achenbach on June 30, 1965, he diagnosed appellant's difficulty as acute lumbar sacro strain with no permanent disability.
Appellant testified that upon returning to work he continued to suffer from pains in his back, and that the pains extended down into his left leg. No additional treatments were obtained until after December 2, 1965, when he alleged that he had a recurrence of the injury first sustained on February 8, 1965. At the hearing before the referee, Dr. Reigh testified that on February 18, 1966, following treatments begun after the injury of December 2, 1965, he performed a partial laminectomy on appellant for the removal of a ruptured
[ 215 Pa. Super. Page 385]
disc. He found no evidence of further disc difficulties other than a sensory deficit on appellant's left leg over the nerve root. He expressed his opinion that the rupture he operated on resulted from the accident which occurred on February 8, 1965. No ...