General Guideline Principles for Red Flags
for workers compensation patients

The New York State workers compensation board has developed these guidelines to help physicians, podiatrists, and other healthcare professionals provide appropriate treatment for Red Flags.

These Workers Compensation Board guidelines are intended to assist healthcare professionals in making decisions regarding the appropriate level of care for their patients with ankle and foot disorders.

The guidelines are not a substitute for clinical judgement or professional experience. The ultimate decision regarding care must be made by the patient in consultation with his or her healthcare provider.

Red Flags of Complex Regional Pain Syndrome

An urgent consultation may be required if there is physical proof of an actual medical or psychiatric issue that is consistent with the patient’s history and test results. A history of cancer, an infection, an endocrinological problem, or a systemic ailment may allude to the potential existence of a significant underlying condition.

Investigations that would not seem to be related to the work injury but would still need to be done may be necessary if a medical history suggests pathology coming from somewhere other than the area that was initially injured (for example, shoulder pain from the gall bladder or cervical spine; joint concerns from rheumatological disorders).

Dangerousness to oneself or others, extreme drunkenness, psychosis, and homelessness are examples of psychosocial red flags. Signs that could indicate risk factors for late recovery should be regarded as “yellow” flags.

The primary focus of Table 1 is on systemic problems that might have gone unnoticed in a patient complaining of persistent pain. However, given the high co-morbidity frequency with chronic pain, the specialist should still check, appraise, and inquire about present psychological disorders if the person has no prior history.

Table 1. Red Flags for Potentially Serious Conditions Associated with Chronic Pain*

What our office can do if you have workers compensation injuries

We have the experience to help you with their workers compensation injuries. We understand what you are going through and will meet your medical needs and follow the guidelines set by the New York State Workers Compensation Board.

We understand the importance of your workers compensation cases. Let us help you navigate through the maze of dealing with the workers compensation insurance company and your employer.

We understand that this is a stressful time for you and your family. If you would like to schedule an appointment, please contact us so we will do everything we can to make it as easy on you as possible.


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Dr. Nakul Karkare

I am fellowship trained in joint replacement surgery, metabolic bone disorders, sports medicine and trauma. I specialize in total hip and knee replacements, and I have personally written most of the content on this page.

You can see my full CV at my profile page.