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Posted by: Tanja Trezise on Apr 11, 2013

Court: TN Workers Comp Appeals

Attorneys 1:

Alonzo W. Howard, Nashville, Tennessee, pro se.

Attorneys 2:

Sarah H. Best and Julie Cochran Fuller, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellee, BellSouth Telecommunications, Inc.

Judge(s): LEE

Pursuant to Tennessee Supreme Court Rule 51, this workers’ compensation appeal has been referred to the Special Workers’ Compensation Appeals Panel for a hearing and a report of findings of fact and conclusions of law. The employee reported to his employer that he had sustained bilateral carpal tunnel syndrome as a result of his work activities. The employer provided the employee with medical treatment. After the parties reached an impasse at the benefit review conference, the employer filed a petition seeking a determination of whether the employee was entitled to additional workers’ compensation benefits. The employee’s pre-trial motion to compel discovery was denied by the trial court. At trial, both sides presented expert medical evidence to support their positions as to the cause and nature of the employee’s condition. The trial court denied the employee’s claim, accrediting the testimony of the employer’s expert witness that the employee did not suffer from carpal tunnel syndrome and that his symptoms did not arise out of or occur in the course and scope of his employment. On appeal, the employee contends that the trial court abused its discretion in denying his motion to compel discovery and in accrediting the testimony of the employer’s expert witness. After careful review, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.