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Families Are Concerned About ATV Safety

As many area residents probably know, Pennsylvania has a large amount of all-terrain vehicle (ATV) users.  Exploring the natural beauty of central Pennsylvania by ATV, motorbike, or snowmobile is a common activity among our area's families.  However, the converse side to this activity is the potential for serious injury or death.  According to a recent report, Pennsylvania ranks among the top five states for the highest numbers of ATV-related deaths.  Many families across the country are becoming concerned about the safety and use of ATVs. Some families have created an informative website called Concerned Families for ATV Safety, which can be viewed by clicking this link.  

Interested in learning more about Pennsylvania's ATV safety statistics? During a five year period of 2007-2011, Pennsylvania had 97 fatalities resulted from all-terrain vehicles.  Many factors are cited as contributing to these deaths. ATVs can reach high speeds, but their tires are not as stable or supportive.  They are also not designed for paved roads.  When ATVs reach a high level of speed on a paved road, this can lead to roll-overs.   Many ATV riders also do not wear helmets, which contributes to a heightened level/severity of injury. Notably, most reported ATV accidents occurred on paved roads and involved only a single ATV.  Most ATV users are also males of teenage years or older. In many accidents, alcohol use by the driver is also a factor.  Due to a marked increase in the number of recent ATV sales, the general public may see the number of ATV accidents climb in the coming years. 

As noted above, ATVs, dirt bikes, and other off-road vehicles (such as snowmobiles) are a leading cause of serious injury among Pennsylvanians, especially among our state's youth.   Attorney Doug Stoehr of Altoona, PA handles cases involving injury as a result of accidents involving off-road vehicles.  For more information about Attorney Doug Stoehr and his Blair county area practice, please visit his website at http://www.stoehrlaw.com or call his law firm at 814-946-4100.

20% Of Americans Suffer From Chronic Pain

A leading psychological news source, PsychCentral.net, recently posted an article about the prevalence of chronic pain.  According to their research, about 1 in 5 Americans suffer from daily pain that has spanned 3 or more months.  Across the US, these numbers equate to almost 40 million Americans.  Women appear to be at a higher risk for chronic pain than men, and minorities appear less likely to report incidences of chronic pain.  For more on the article and its research, please click here

It is very important to monitor your pain and consult with a knowledgeable physician if you suspect that you may have a case of chronic pain.   Attorney Doug Stoehr is a personal injury lawyer located in Altoona, PA and serves the central and western Pennsylvania area.  For more information on him and his firm, please click here.

Adolescent Chronic Pain Is Expensive

Recently, NewsWise published an online article that detailed the prevalence of adolescent chronic pain the United States.  The article cited research conducted by the American Pain Society's journal, the Journal of Pain.  Statistics within the article include the fact that the total U.S. economic burden of adolescent chronic pain is about $19.5 billion every year.  About 5% of children and adolescents suffer from moderate to severe chronic pain, and medical costs related to their chronic pain amounts to about $11,000 per year for each child.  They also miss a significant amount of school and report a poorer quality of life than many of their peers.  For more from the Newswise article, please click here

Attorney Doug Stoehr is a central Pennsylvania personal injury lawyer.  He takes cases for clients who are experiencing chronic pain due to an accident or injury caused by the fault of another.  For more information on Attorney Doug Stoehr's Altoona, PA area practice, please call his office at 814-946-4100 or continue to browse his website at http://www.stoehrlaw.com

Think Twice Before Choose Opioids For Chronic Pain

According to a recent article by the LA Times, it appears that opioid medication may not be a good option for patients suffering from chronic pain.  As stated in the article, chronic pain patients who regularly use opioids to manage their pain are at a heightened susceptibility to overdose and become addicted to their prescriptions.  Additionally, continual use of opioid medication to manage chronic pain leads to a buildup of tolerance, which may necessitate a higher dose of medication to achieve pain relief.  To read more from this article and the corresponding position statement by the American Academy of Neurology, please click here.  

Attorney Doug Stoehr is a personal injury lawyer serving Blair and the seven surrounding counties in central Pennsylvania.  He takes cases for clients who are experiencing chronic pain as the result of an injury due to the fault of another.   For more information on his Altoona, PA area firm, please call his office at 814-946-4100 or visit his website at http://www.stoehrlaw.com.

Stanford Device Could Treat Chronic Pain

According to a recent news report, a team of Stanford scientists is working on a way to more effectively treat chronic pain.  One of the team members, who is an electrical engineer, is currently working on developing tiny robotic devices that be inserted in the body and work to regulate pain signals.  These devices are planned to be operated remotely.  The researchers involved in this project are hoping that their new technology will provide an effective alternative for chronic pain patients who are not responding to medication and/or have not received any significant benefits from surgery. For more on this cutting-edge research, please read the original article here

It is very important to monitor your pain and consult with a knowledgeable physician if you suspect that you may have a case of chronic pain.  Many chronic pain sufferers initially develop pain after the occurrence of a serious accident or injury.  Attorney Doug Stoehr is a personal injury lawyer located in Altoona, PA and serves the central and western Pennsylvania area. He takes cases for chronic pain patients who are suffering from their condition due to the fault of another. For more information on him and his firm, please click here.

The Stigma Of Chronic Pain

Chronic pain is very real and prevalent medical diagnosis, but it is also one that many refuse to accept and acknowledge, whether they are the sufferer of the pain or not.  Pain Pathways magazine (Spring 2011) had a brief article addressing the issue of chronic pain and public perception of the disorder.  Pain Pathways states that patients suffering from chronic pain have two major social issues to overcome when dealing with their diagnosis--perception that others will think that they are weak for reporting their pain, and fear of job loss if they report the condition to their employers.  Additionally, many chronic pain patients also don't want to seek treatment for their condition because they fear that it is untreatable or they don't want to become addicted to pain medications. 

Although these fears are are not unrealistic, they are only serving to harm patients who could otherwise receive very valuable help for their pain problems.  If you or a loved one have been experiencing prolonged pain, seek the counsel of a physician as soon as you are able.  There are a variety of options for chronic pain management that could greatly improve the quality of life for chronic pain sufferers.  Additionally, since chronic pain is becoming more frequently recognized and diagnosed as a primary medical disorder, fewer people are now denying the existence of persistent, significant pain problems.

It is very important to monitor your pain and consult with a knowledgeable physician if you suspect that you may have a case of chronic pain.   Attorney Doug Stoehr is a personal injury lawyer located in Altoona, PA and serves the central and western Pennsylvania area.  For more information on him and his firm, please click here.

4 Year Old Boy Dies In ATV Accident

According to a local news report, a four-year-old Butler County boy recently died as a result of an ATV accident.  As many area residents probably know, Pennsylvania has a large amount of all-terrain vehicle (ATV) users.  Exploring the natural beauty of central Pennsylvania by ATV, motorbike, or snowmobile is a common activity among our area's families.  However, the converse side to this activity is the potential for serious injury or death.  According to a recent report, Pennsylvania ranks among the top five states for the highest numbers of ATV-related deaths.

During a five year period of 2007-2011, Pennsylvania had 97 fatalities resulted from all-terrain vehicles.  Many factors are cited as contributing to these deaths. ATVs can reach high speeds, but their tires are not as stable or supportive.  They are also not designed for paved roads.  When ATVs reach a high level of speed on a paved road, this can lead to roll-overs.   Many ATV riders also do not wear helmets, which contributes to a heightened level/severity of injury. Notably, most reported ATV accidents occurred on paved roads and involved only a single ATV.  Most ATV users are also males of teenage years or older. In many accidents, alcohol use by the driver is also a factor.  Due to a marked increase in the number of recent ATV sales, the general public may see the number of ATV accidents climb in the coming years. 

As noted above, ATVs, dirt bikes, and other off-road vehicles (such as snowmobiles) are a leading cause of serious injury among Pennsylvanians, especially among our state's youth.   Attorney Doug Stoehr of Altoona, PA handles cases involving injury as a result of accidents involving off-road vehicles.  For more information about Attorney Doug Stoehr and his Blair county area practice, please visit his website at http://www.stoehrlaw.com or call his law firm at 814-946-4100.

What People With Chronic Pain Want You To Know

The Huffington Post covered an article focusing on the few things that people suffering from chronic pain would like others to know. Many people suffering from chronic pain not only deal with the physical pains of the disease, but also the emotional pains that come from having conflict with family and friends over the disease.  Sometimes, people with chronic pain find it difficult to do simple, everyday things that healthy people take for granted.  This can cause conflict when healthy family members or friends do not fully understand what their pain-enduring counterparts are dealing with.

According to the article, many sufferers of chronic pain feel that often, most people believe that they use their diagnosis as a crutch or excuse to get out of an activity.  That couldn't be further from the truth.  Additionally, chronic pain is called chronic for a reason.  This diagnosis means that most people feel some level of pain constantly and it can persist for months or years.  Just because the injury is old does not mean that it hurts any less.

Additionally, it often becomes tiresome and irritating when others mention common remedies for treating pain.  Chances are, the chronic pain patient has tried just about every avenue possible to relieve their pain and resume a normal, pain-free life.  Stemming from that idea, chronic pain can also make a person feel depressed and irritated.  Depression and chronic pain are often co-occurring diagnoses.  It also means that the disorder can affect the ability to sleep, leading to chronic fatigue and potential irritability. Taking all these things in mind, it is important to be sensitive and aware of what those suffering from chronic pain are dealing with.

Attorney Doug Stoehr is a personal injury lawyer serving Blair and the seven surrounding counties in central Pennsylvania.  He takes cases for clients who are experiencing chronic pain as the result of an injury due to the fault of another.   For more information on his Altoona, PA area firm, please call his office at 814-946-4100 or visit his website at http://www.stoehrlaw.com.

Nursing Homes May Breed Loneliness

Many of our country's elderly citizens now reside in nursing homes or residential care facilities.  Although nursing homes can be a good environment for some residents, others often experience feelings of loneliness, isolation, and depression after being admitted to the facility.  Too often, these feels last and become chronic feelings that negatively impact the quality of life of the elderly person.

Some researchers say that up to 84% of the elderly population suffers from loneliness, and 20-25% of nursing home residents are also depressed.  Unfortunately, depression and isolation often go untreated in nursing home facilities because it is difficult to accurately assess.  

According to the experts, nursing home residents also have few opportunities for formal and informal social activities.  As a result of this, many of the residents experience feelings of prolonged isolation and loneliness.  One research study mentioned the fact that, in some nursing homes, there was formal staff engagement in social activities only 10% of the time.  The rest of the time, residents had to create their own social engagements or organize their own activities.

Unfortunately, your loved one's isolation and loneliness could also be a result of abuse at the hands of the nursing home staff.  Although these symptoms are not always are a direct result of abuse, if you suspect that an elderly loved one has been abused while in the care of another, it could be time to take legal action.  Contact an experienced elder abuse lawyer, Attorney Doug Stoehr, for more information about your possible legal claim.

If you would like more information about this page or Attorney Stoehr's areas of practice, contact our Altoona, Pennsylvania, law firm by calling 814-946-4100. Home and hospital visits can be arranged. Evening and weekend hours are available for your convenience.

Truck Drivers Also Are Distracted Drivers

When you see tractor-trailers moving along our country's highways, you expect their drivers to be safe, alert, and vigilant. Unfortunately, this is not always the case.  A local New York City news source just posted an article about the increased occurrence of truck drivers who text and drive.  According to the news report, through local ABC news station 13WHAM,  "A hidden camera investigation has uncovered a dangerous trend on highways. WABC-TV in New York City set up camera on several of highly travel roadways, catching truckers texting and talking on their phones and one driver even talking on two cell phones at once. The New York State Department of Transportation said nearly 16,000 truckers were ticketed for distracted driving in 2013, but only four of them were suspended and taken out of service." 4 out of 16,000 drivers who were caught texting while driving seems like a tiny percentage!    

If you are involved in a car accident, most states, including Pennsylvania, have at least one section on the incident report dedicated to distracted driving violations.  Fines and charges may increase if you are cited with one of these violations.  Distracted driving is a major cause of motor vehicle accidents on the highway.  If you have been injured as the result of a distracted driver, it might be time to consult an attorney.  Attorney Doug Stoehr is a personal injury lawyer serving western and central Pennsylvania.  Please visit his website athttp://www.stoehrlaw.com for more information.

Please read more of the original 13WHAM article by clicking this link. 

Chronic Pain in the Workplace

One of the main problems surrounding symptoms of chronic pain is how it influences every aspect of your life.  Chronic pain is often not a disorder that changes its symptoms or decreases across situations.  Due to this, chronic pain can lead to problems in other aspects of your life, such as socially, athletically, and in workplace performance.

An article by Human Resource Executive Online addressed this problem in one of their online articles.  According to the article, HR professionals have an obligation to look for the signs of chronic pain and approach employees about it when appropriate.  Additionally, these professionals should familiarize themselves with the laws and regulations surrounding disabilities (professionally diagnosed chronic pain is considered both a medical condition and a disability). Workers with chronic pain do have rights under the Americans With Disabilities Act.  The article also acknowledged that chronic pain can carry stigma for the suffer, so HR representatives should be sensitive when broaching the subject.  Many companies also have infrastructure in place to support people with disabilities, so HR representatives should work to try and get those services put in place for the sufferer of chronic pain.   Overall, it is prudent on the part of the employee and HR representative to work together to discuss the medical condition and come to grips with how that will affect their job performance.

Chronic pain is a tricky diagnosis in terms of finding the right medication combination that will work, but will not lead to overmedication.  Working with your physician and seeing what is right for you is the only way to find an effective, realistic pain management treatment.  If you would like more information about this page or central Pennsylvania attorney Doug Stoehr's areas of practice, contact our Altoona, Pennsylvania, law firm by calling 814-946-4100.

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