ABF FREIGHT SYSTEM, INC.
Cert. applied for.
Workers' compensation. Jackson Superior Court. Before Judge Mingledorff.
Hamilton, Westby, Antonowich & Anderson, William N. Anderson, Robert W. Smith, for appellant.
Todd K. Maziar, for appellee.
DOYLE, Presiding Judge. Dillard, J., concurs. Miller, J., concurs in judgment only.
Doyle, Presiding Judge.
Omer Presley sought judicial review of the decision of the State Board of Workers' Compensation (" the Board" ), which denied his claim for workers' compensation benefits. The superior court reversed and remanded the case to the Board for consideration of certain evidence. ABF filed an application for discretionary review, this Court granted the application, and ABF now appeals. For the following reasons, we reverse.
The relevant facts show that Presley worked for ABF for approximately 19 years as a truck driver and dock worker. On June 4, 2009, he sustained a compensable job-related injury to his right knee. He had surgery on his knee, remained out of work until September 15, 2009, and was paid temporary total disability benefits during his absence. On September 16, 2009, Presley returned to work without restrictions or limitations. He continued to perform his normal job duties: loading and unloading trucks by hand and machine and driving a tractor-trailer. His right knee, however, continued to get worse, and he was diagnosed with arthritis in that knee on March 17, 2010, and was advised that he would eventually need a right knee replacement.
On December 4, 2009, Presley sustained a compensable job-related injury to his left knee. He subsequently had surgery, remained out of work as a result of this injury from June 24, 2010, through September 18, 2010, and received temporary total disability benefits during this time. On September 20, 2010, Presley returned to work without restrictions or limitations and resumed his normal duties, with no changes thereto.
In June or July 2010, the doctor who performed both knee surgeries discussed the possibility that Presley might need surgical replacement of his right knee. On January 21, 2011, the doctor again discussed the possibility of right knee replacement surgery. Presley testified before the Board that his right knee pain worsened after his left knee surgery. On February 4, 2011, a recurrent tear of the medial meniscus was diagnosed in Presley's left knee. Presley continued to work his normal job duties, but his right knee pain worsened. He received several injections in his right knee between September 2011, [330 Ga.App. 886] and December 15, 2011, and he was prescribed various anti-inflammatory medications. In February 2012, after an additional year of continuing to work his regular job duties following his left meniscus tear, the doctor informed Presley that right knee replacement surgery was necessary.
Presley had total knee replacement surgery on his right knee on June 19, 2012, and was placed on a " no-work" status until October 29, 2012. On March 21, 2013, Presley sought payment of temporary total disability benefits from June 2012, through October ...