Latest Keoghs Insight

JR v Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundations Trust [2017] EWHC 1245 (QB)

Client Alerts||30/10/2017

Fourteenth Edition of the Judicial College’s Guidelines for the Assessment of General Damages in Personal Injury Cases

Client Alerts||15/09/2017

Personal Injury Discount Rate

Client Alerts||08/09/2017

Limitation (Childhood Abuse) (Scotland) Act 2017 to come into force in October 2017

Client Alerts||23/08/2017

Costs budget exaggeration is misconduct

Client Alerts||17/08/2017

Blackmore v Department for Communities and Local Government 2017 EWCA Civ 1136

Client Alerts||04/08/2017

Lord Justice Jackson's review into Fixed Recoverable Costs (FRC)

Client Alerts||01/08/2017

Sentencing guidelines: Reduction in sentence for a guilty plea – update

Client Alerts||27/07/2017

Minibus claims worth over £100,000 stopped dead in their tracks as Keoghs and Mulsanne Insurance prove fundamental dishonesty

News And Events||20/11/2017

Keoghs IT team celebrate double award win

News And Events||17/11/2017

Keoghs unveils first true AI insurance lawyer

News And Events||07/11/2017

Expansion continues for Keoghs with launch of Marine, Ports and Offshore team

News And Events||03/11/2017

Automated and Electric Vehicles Bill

News And Events||20/10/2017

Keoghs IT team recognised in prestigious awards

News And Events||19/10/2017

Disputed causation leaves claimants paying the price

News And Events||17/10/2017

Keoghs announce 20 promotions and four new appointments

News And Events||31/08/2017

The Meaning of “Accidental Damage”

Blogs||14/11/2017

Is an approved budget the starting point for a payment on account of costs?

Blogs||08/11/2017

The Discount Rate - Time to Draw the Line?

Blogs||25/10/2017

Out of your Control: The expanding limits of vicarious liability - Natasha Armes v Nottinghamshire County Council

Blogs||23/10/2017

Keoghs Launches Online Ogden Multiplier Calculator

Blogs||09/10/2017

A new way of life? Magill v Panel Systems (DB Limited)

Blogs||27/09/2017

Driver disqualification and the case for exceptional hardship

Blogs||25/09/2017

Health and Safety Executive FFI invoices – new panel, same challenges

Blogs||21/09/2017

Credit Hire Aware 12

AWARE||19/07/2017

Costs Aware Issue 3

AWARE||22/06/2017

Property Aware 5

AWARE||14/06/2017

Credit Hire Aware 11

AWARE||21/12/2016

Fraud Aware 5

AWARE||27/10/2016

Costs Aware 2

AWARE||24/10/2016

Disease Aware 8

AWARE||05/10/2016

Credit Hire Aware 10

AWARE||18/08/2016

Keoghs Insight

We keep you up-to-date on emerging market issues and their impact on the insurance sector, through a variety of publications, events and our leading market initiatives.

Author

Terry Zindi

Terry Zindi

Partner

T: 01204 677187

Looking to the future: Trends in Disease - Dupuytren’s Contracture

Blogs||29/03/2017

Background

Dupuytren’s Contracture (‘DC’) is a condition which affects the hands and fingers. Symptoms normally include one or more fingers or thumbs bending into the palm of one or both hands. Problems occur when the connective tissue in the palm thickens into a small hard nodule under the palm of the skin with further nodules developing as time passes. When the nodules extend and form cords these contract and pull the fingers and/or thumbs towards the palm of the hand affected. The nodules which form are not life threatening but the condition is difficult to live with and normally the contractures get increasingly worse over time.

The exact cause of DC is not known although symptoms have been linked to age, family history, smoking, diabetes and medication used to treat epilepsy. Ancestry is also thought to be linked to DC, with patients of Northern European descent having an increased risk of the condition. Treatments for the condition include radiation therapy, collagenese injections and in severe cases surgery to shorten or remove the connective tissue to relieve tension.

There is no evidence to suggest work involving exposure to vibration causes DC. That said, recent research by the Oxford Musultoskeletal Biomedical Research Unit  considered the issue of Hand-Transmitted Vibration (HTV) and also the relationship between DC and occupational exposure to HTV.

Their research, which included a survey of 4,969 male respondents, concluded that the risk of DC more than doubled in men with high levels of exposure to HTV. In 2015 the Health & Safety Laboratory prepared a detailed paper for the Health & Safety Executive  which discussed a possible link between DC and vibration. Whilst the paper ultimately concludes there is no convincing evidence vibration exposure on its own is causal to DC, it does highlight DC remains a highly topical issue which is under observation by Government bodies.

Recognition as an Industrial Disease

The Industrial Injuries Advisory Council (IIAC) is an independent statutory body set up in 1946 to advise the Government on whether a list of prescribed diseases for which benefits are paid should be enlarged or amended.

In May 2014 the IIAC undertook a review of upper limb disorders and came to the conclusion there was sufficient evidence to add DC to the list of prescribed diseases for which Industrial Disablement Benefit is paid where:

Following this review there has been notable interest in DC from both trade unions and claimant solicitors who are investigating links between DC and potential compensation claims.

Keoghs’ view

This exposure in the media has sparked interest from claimant firms wishing to capitalise on potential new areas for occupational disease claims. Insurers and companies involved in forestry, construction, foundry, steel, factory assembly and estate management work should be alert to this growing issue.

Employers are reminded of their duty to safeguard their workforce from potential hazards involving the development and aggravation of upper limb disorders. They should also provide adequate training, where appropriate, as failure to do so may lead to claims for compensation.