The range of occupational diseases related to MSDs in accordance with the Occupational Diseases Regulations (BKV)
Employees with an MSD are often unable to return to work in spite of integration and rehabilitation measures. You will find information here on whether compensation is possible under insurance law (occupational disease).
Medical rehabilitation and workplace integration after a long period of illness rank first, for employees with MSDs as well - key term: workplace integration management (WIM). However, around 2000 recognised occupational diseases every year and regularly over 10 per cent of early retirements in connection with MSDs highlight the limits of this procedure. If a return to work is not possible, or only with restrictions, the compensation process becomes the centre of attention.
A whole series of important and familiar causal connections between occupational effects and their possible resulting in MSDs is known. These are listed in Schedule 1 of the Occupational Diseases Regulations ("Berufskrankheitenverordnung", BKV). Priority is given to occupational diseases BK2101 to BK2114 in Section 2 Diseases caused by physical workloads ("Durch physikalische Einwirkungen verursachte Krankheiten") - see below.
In addition, some occupational diseases caused by chemical effects and by working in compressed air must also be mentioned. There are certain connections to MSDs here as well - see below.
By means of the BKV or the occupational diseases list, employers can identify the physical workloads for which initiatives for the prevention of MSDs are particularly advisable. In addition, in accordance with s. 3 of the BKV Measures against occupational diseases, transitional benefit ("Maßnahmen gegen Berufskrankheiten, Übergangsleistung") individual prevention measures can be initiated through the accident insurance providers with which the occurrence of an occupational disease can be prevented under certain circumstances.
Essential legal sources:
The following diseases of the musculoskeletal system can be recognised as occupational diseases (insured event). However, specific mechanical effects and other preconditions must be verifiably present or met:
The Medical Experts' Advisory Board "Occupational Diseases" ("Ärztlicher Sachverständigenbeirat 'Berufskrankheiten'", ÄSVB) is co-responsible for the inclusion of diseases in the list of occupational diseases. This is an independent advisory body that supports the Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs (BMAS) in its decision-making in questions of medical science. For this purpose the advisory board inspects and assesses the status of scientific knowledge with regard to both the updating of existing occupational diseases in the BKV and to the inclusion of new diseases in the Regulation. Following this, the advisory board draws up recommendations and statements for the ministry on the basis of existing findings.
At present, further diseases of the musculoskeletal system in connection with high physical demands are in the "Advisory" stage in the Medical Experts' Advisory Board. This means that a preliminary review has taken place as part of preparing a scientific recommendation for a new occupational disease. For two diseases, this has resulted in sufficient scientific verification of a causal connection between a potentially damaging effect and the development of these diseases.
In the context of the deliberations, the ÄSVB will now examine the general predisposition, that is, the existence of medical science findings on the fundamental causal connectivity between potentially damaging effects and the development of a disease. Diseases of the musculoskeletal system that are in the advisory phase at present are:
If the general predisposition has been determined, the existence of a "group-specific risk increase" is examined in the next phase. Here it is determined whether persons who are exposed to the damaging effect in their insured work have a considerably higher risk of disease than the general population.
Musculoskeletal diseases can also be caused by exposure to hazardous substances. This should be noted with the following occupational diseases:
You can find more information on the subject of occupational diseases and on our current research in this field under "Publications and documents" and "Further information".