Many American workers mistakenly believe that office work is painless and that few medical issues could develop from sitting at a desk. According to The Mayo Clinic, however, sitting for long periods increases the risks of cardiovascular disease and high blood pressure.

When an illness or injury develops from a job-related activity, an employee may file a claim for workers’ compensation benefits. With few exceptions, this applies to all workplaces, whether factory, office or outdoors. If work aggravates an employee’s pre-existing condition, he or she may also apply, as reported by Pennsylvania’s Department of Labor & Industry.

To qualify for benefits, a work-related health condition or injury must prevent an employee from performing his or her tasks. Whether an occupational disease or an injury caused an employee to seek medical attention, he or she must show that the job led to a disability.

Office jobs carry risks of repetitive stress or motion injuries that could result in severe and chronic pain. Carpal tunnel syndrome, for example, may develop from continuous typing or from using a mouse. Any repetitive action that results in pressure on the median nerve running through the wrist may cause CTS.

As reported by Fast Company magazine, CTS symptoms include hand weakness, numbing or burning sensations that could prevent an employee from working. At least eight million employees reportedly receive a CTS diagnosis each year.

Computer screen eyestrain could eventually prevent a worker from carrying out his or her tasks. At least 60% of adults reported symptoms such as blurred vision and headaches.

When work-related eyestrain or hand and wrist pain causes an office worker to seek medical treatment, he or she may apply for workers’ compensation benefits. An employee who needs to take time off to recover may receive financial and medical support before returning to work.