$80,000 Non-Pecuniary Assessment for Chronic Myofascial Pain and TOS

Reasons for judgement were released today by the BC Supreme Court, Vancouver Registry, assessing damages for chronic myofascial pain and thoracic outlet syndrome following a collision.
In today’s case (Kodelja v. Johal) the Plaintiff was involved in a 2012 collision that the Defendant accepted responsibility for.  The Plaintiff suffered chronic injuries which remained symptomatic by the time of trial and were partially limiting but not disabling.  In assessing non-pecuniary damages at $80,000 Mr. Justice Masuhara provided the following reasons:

[92]         Therefore, my summary of findings regarding the plaintiff’s injuries is: 

(a)            The Accident caused the plaintiff’s chronic myofascial pain syndrome and post traumatic thoracic outlet syndrome.  The pain is in her left neck, left shoulder and upper back.  She also has paresthesia in her left arm as a result of the thoracic outlet syndrome. 

(b)            The Accident caused the plaintiff to suffer headaches which continue.  The headache pain ranges from dull, to mild to severe.  She gets dull or mild headaches every other day and manages without medication.  She has more significant headaches once every two weeks.  They can be managed with Tylenol and Advil. 

(c)            The major areas of the pain are in her left neck, shoulder and upper back.  The right hip and groin area pain is minor and was an aggravation of a prior condition. 

(d)            The pain in her neck, shoulder and back ranges from mild to moderate. 

(e)            Her overall condition since the Accident has improved at least 50%. 

(f)              The numbness and tingling in the plaintiff’s left arm is intermittent and infrequent, the last occurrence was, at least over a year ago.  It is not disabling. 

(g)            The plaintiff has normal range of motion of the left shoulder.  Her right shoulder movements are full.  She has full flexion and extension in her cervical spine. 

(h)            The plaintiff has some physical limitations, however, she is able to carry out normal day-to-day activities including teaching, with the work support and prep time available to her, and home cleaning and cooking. 

(i)              The plaintiff is functional for basic handling, reaching, balance, stooping, lifting and carrying for amounts tested, sitting, standing and walking.  She is able to do housecleaning though has difficulty with heavier activities for which she requires some assistance. 

(j)              She is able to participate in social and recreational activities such as camping, holiday travel, and sailing, but is restricted from participation in more rigorous recreational activities such as running and swimming.  But for the demands of her work on her time, she is able to maintain a social life. 

(k)            She is able to perform her teaching duties, including leading or assisting in after school student extra-curricular activities. 

 

[102]     The ranges the parties rely on are not too far apart.  The assessment in this case, while guided by other cases, is tailored to the specifics of the present case.  My review of the cases handed up and my findings lead me to assess damages under this head at $80,000. 

bc injury law, Kodelja v. Johal, Mr. Justice Masuhara

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ERIK
MAGRAKEN

Personal Injury Lawyer

When not writing the BC Injury Law Blog, Erik is the managing partner at MacIsaac & Company, based in Victoria, B.C. He is also involved with combative sports regulatory issues and authors the Combat Sports Law Blog.

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