Sixth Appellate District Takes on “Substantial Aggravation”
Lake v. Anne Grady Corp., 2013-Ohio-4740
Claimant in this case attempted to have her claim amended to include “substantial aggravation of pre-existing osteoarthritis left knee.” The request was approved throughout administratively. The employer was granted summary judgment based upon an Affidavit of the employer’s physician who indicated that there were no objective diagnostic findings, objective clinical findings or objective test results supporting the treating physician’s opinion that her osteoarthritis had been “aggravated.” “Merely stating that objective evidence exists is not in and of itself objective evidence.” The treating physician’s Affidavit failed to state how these unidentified x-rays and clinical findings support the conclusion that the condition has been substantially aggravated. The Court of Appeals affirmed the granting of summary judgment for the employer.
Lesson Learned: In evaluating these cases for substantial aggravation, employers must see documented clinical objective evidence, rather than just the magic words, the “substantial aggravation.”