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HELEN F. HOLLAND v. WORKMEN'S COMPENSATION APPEAL BOARD (02/14/75)

decided: February 14, 1975.

HELEN F. HOLLAND, APPELLANT,
v.
WORKMEN'S COMPENSATION APPEAL BOARD, JAMES INDUSTRIES, AND ERIE INSURANCE EXCHANGE, INSURANCE CARRIER, APPELLEES



Appeal from the Order of the Workmen's Compensation Appeal Board in case of Helen F. Holland v. James Industries, Claim Petition No. 207-22-8444.

COUNSEL

T. Dean Lower, for appellant.

Neil B. Murchison, with him Sullivan and Murchison, and James N. Diefenderfer, for appellees.

Judges Kramer, Wilkinson, Jr. and Mencer, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Wilkinson.

Author: Wilkinson

[ 16 Pa. Commw. Page 368]

Claimant-appellant was an employee of appellee on June 15, 1970, at which time her job consisted of gluing pieces of toys together, necessitating the squeezing of pieces between her right thumb and the fingers of her right hand and holding them together for a short period of time. This task was repeated eight times a minute for an entire eight-hour shift. On that particular evening, claimant was gluing pieces of a toy kitten which pieces came out of a machine and were still hot when claimant picked them up. She developed a blister on her right thumb and asked for and received a band-aid from the employer's "floor girl." Claimant testified that although she continued to work on the following days, her thumb was sore; that as the blister healed, the joint at the base of her thumb got sorer.

Claimant went on vacation on June 27, returned to work on July 7, and worked through July 10, 1970. She testified, however, that her thumb continued to be swollen and painful and that on July 6, 1970, she consulted a reflexologist who advised her to see a physician. On July 20, 1970, her family physician diagnosed the injury to her thumb as stenosing tenosynovitis and deQuervian's disease. It was his opinion that the above described work activity was the cause of this condition. This diagnosis was later confirmed by an orthopedic physician and after conservative attempts to treat the thumb failed, claimant was operated on on March 3, 1971, and

[ 16 Pa. Commw. Page 369]

    was eventually discharged by both doctors as fully recovered on May 19, 1971.

Claimant timely filed a claim petition. Hearings were held and on December 28, 1973, the referee disallowed the claim. The Workmen's Compensation Appeal Board affirmed on May 23, 1974, and claimant has appealed to us.

The referee's findings of fact are set forth here in their entirety:

"First: On June 15, 1970 the claimant was employed by the defendant.

"Second: On June 15, 1970 neither the claimant nor the defendant had rejected the ...


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