Robinson v. Krey Packing Co.

Decision Date22 March 1971
Docket NumberNo. 33816,33816
Citation467 S.W.2d 91
PartiesLouis ROBINSON, Employee, Plaintiff-Respondent, v. KREY PACKING COMPANY, Employer and Self-Insurer, Defendant-Appellant.
CourtMissouri Court of Appeals

R. C. Reis, St. Louis, for defendant-appellant.

Harry J. Nichols, St. Louis, for plaintiff-respondent.

BRADY, Presiding Judge.

In this workmen's compensation proceeding the Referee found the claimant was permanently totally disabled, to be entitled to compensation therefor, and also awarded a pension for life. The Industrial Commission modified this award to hold the claimant's disability was 50 percent of the body as a whole. This award was affirmed by the circuit court.

From the transcript and evidence before us we believe the Commission could have found the following state of facts to exist. The claimant was operated for a hernia on the right side in 1959 and after a period of recuperation was examined by the employer's plant physician, Dr. Donley, who found him to be free of residual disability and permitted him to resume his job with the employer. His work necessitated lifting heavy boxes (up to one hundred pounds in weight) and he did so without any history of disability from this hernia operation.

The incident that is involved in the present claim occurred June 1, 1965, when the claimant was guiding a battery powered dolly in the employer's plant. The power driven wheel hit a hole in the floor causing the handle on the dolly to fly up and hit him in the left groin, knocking him to the floor and knocking the wind out of him. He testified he had pain 'In the groin' at that time. In reply to a question asking him to be more specific as to the location of the pain he stated: 'Well, it was--I immediately began to swell across the lower part of my stomach or groin. * * * Was it more on one side than on the other? * * * Well, it was clear across.' He reported the accident to his foreman that day. He was examined by Dr. Donley, the plant physician, who treated him almost the entire month of June. On July 6 Dr. Donley diagnosed 'probably hernia left side and right side. It was my opinion that there had been a recurrence of hernia on both sides.'

Although he was suffering considerable pain claimant continued working until his admission to the hospital under the direction of Dr. Donley on July 15. The next day he was operated for double hernia with cord transplant. He was discharged from the hospital July 23 and returned to work September 7 although both sides of his groin were tender. On October 17 he was readmitted to the hospital and operated the next day for hernia on the right side. The incision was made through the same scar as that left by the 1959 operation. He was discharged on the 26th of that same month and returned to work December 13. He continued working until March 21, 1966, when he was again operated at the hospital for recurrence of hernia on the right side. On the occasion of this operation the area of the hernia on the right side was strengthened by Mersilene gauze. This was necessary due to a congenital weakened condition at the right side of the groin. This gauze was used because there was no tissue left to sew together. Its purpose was to reinforce the right side of the groin so the claimant could return to light work. If the gauze breaks open the prognosis is very poor because the testimony was that the application of such material was '* * * about the last thing we do in conditions of this kind. You have done everything known to the profession. You can try another one. We try everything in order to relieve the man's condition. I don't know other than to try to put another piece of gauze in, see what he will have with that.' He was dismissed from the hospital March 30, 1966, and returned to work May 23. Since that time the employee has been fully and gainfully employed doing light work and he does not lift anything weighing over twenty-five pounds.

The claimant's medical expert was a Dr. Mueller. His testimony as to this issue was that the claimant's condition was a permanent disability with a guarded prognosis because he was so limited as to what he could and could not do. He then gave the following testimony: 'Q * * * Doctor, do you have an opinion based on a reasonable degree of medical certainty as to the competent producing cause of the complaints that man had of January 4th, 1968 and what complaints he has today? A The recurrent hernia condition of the right inguinal area. Q Doctor, in your opinion what was the competent producing cause of that condition, assuming those hypothetical facts? A Well, there is the previous operations the man has had. Also the condition of any strain that would exert, be exerted on the weakened tissues of that area. When he was hit or struck a blow with a metal handle that also contributes to any pain in this particular case. Q As far as being struck in the groin with the handle the man had no complaint from 1959 or 1960 up until the time he was struck with that handle, based upon that testimony, do you have an opinion based on a reasonable degree of medical certainty as to whether that was the competent producing cause and contributed or aggravated the condition so much to the extent it required the subsequent operations? A In this particular case, yes. Q What is that opinion? A That was a contributing cause to the hernia condition. Q You use the term contributing cause, could you tell us briefly in so far as medical terminology as to why you use that terminology? A In this particular case this man had a weakened tissue in that area and this was a direct blow which is unusual. This is not a typical case. It's the direct blow in this particular case and the weakened tissue are what I think contributed to it.'

Section 287.195, V.A.M.S., governs claims for hernia under the Workmen's...

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5 cases
  • Taylor v. Labor Pros L.L.C.
    • United States
    • Missouri Court of Appeals
    • January 8, 2013 determine the matters of disability.” Carter v. Frito–Lay, 913 S.W.2d 341, 343 (Mo.App. E.D.1995) (citing Robinson v. Krey Packing Co., 467 S.W.2d 91, 95 (Mo.App.1971)). “The degree of disability resulting from an injury and pre-existing conditions are questions of fact resolved by the C......
  • Shipp v. National Vendors, No. 62128
    • United States
    • Missouri Court of Appeals
    • April 20, 1993
    ...was not an industrial disability where it did not impede claimant from performing his usual duties). See also Robinson v. Krey Packing Co., 467 S.W.2d 91, 94 (Mo.App.1971), and Anderson v. Emerson Electric Company, 698 S.W.2d 574, 576, 577 Further, the cases which have held that claimant do......
  • Pattengill v. General Motors Corp., 61756
    • United States
    • Missouri Court of Appeals
    • December 22, 1992
    ...or aggravation did not foreclose claimant's right to benefits for disability resulting from accident which caused hernia. Robinson v. Krey Packing Co., 467 S.W.2d 91 [, 94 (Mo.App.1971) Generally speaking, a hernia is a protrusion through an abnormal opening. Dorland's Illustrated Medical D......
  • Johnson v. Terre Du Lac, Inc., 56580
    • United States
    • Missouri Court of Appeals
    • May 1, 1990
    ...287.200.2 RSMo 1978. "It is the exclusive province of the Commission to determine the matters of disability." Robinson v. Krey Packing Company, 467 S.W.2d 91, 95 (Mo.App.1971). Within the noted scope of review we find the issue of degree of disability resulting from the back injury and pre-......
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