Functional Capacity Evaluation (FCE)

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ChronicPain1970
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2017
Total Posts : 19
   Posted 10/30/2017 2:59 AM (GMT -7)   
Has anyone had a FCE? Can you provide me a brief overview based on your personal experience? Did it “help” or “hurt” you? It’s my understanding that FCEs are used primarily for WC or SSDI. I’ve just been released by my Ortho to return to work but I have severe function deficiencies in my dominant right arm. I want to present an ADA Accommodation request to my employer to work from home & now my Ortho has ordered the FCE. I do not have any type of WC claim, no personal injury....just a plain, old Short Term Disability claim through my employer’s ERISA plan. The TPA is Aetna. I think my Ortho has ordered the FCE to help me, to support my upcoming ADA Accommodation Request to my employer. Thoughts? Comments? Suggestions?

pitmom
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2015
Total Posts : 2152
   Posted 10/30/2017 4:03 AM (GMT -7)   
FCE's are usually done in relation to your job title. I worked as a cashier, so when I had my FCE it involved...walking, to observe my gait...squatting, balance, repetitive lifting of different weights, pushing, pulling different weights, etc.

It is important to tell the observer when you feel fatigue or pain during these activities.

I had a more 'in depth' evaluation done at one point that also 'tested' my fine motor skills since at one time I worked as an assembler and they wanted to determine if I could return to work in that capacity. Part of the test was reading and following directions...listening to oral directions and carrying them out...putting small pegs in holes by hand, then with pliers, etc.

Seashell may have more to add from the Physical Therapist perspective.

Ultimately, I was given 'restrictions' as to how much weight I could lift...5lbs maximum with right upper extremity...10 lbs maximum with both upper extremities...frequent breaks...etc. My employer was very good about following the 'prescription' from the FCE.

Best wishes to you.
multiple surgeries for rotator cuff both shoulders with residual chronic impingement syndrome, ulnar nerve transposition, carpal tunnel release, multiple wrist surgeries, multiple herniated discs, tarlov cysts, whiplash, bursitis of hips, grade 5 right shoulder separation and torn labrum, ovarian cysts, fibroid tumors of the uterus

straydog
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 15150
   Posted 10/30/2017 5:54 AM (GMT -7)   
CP, below is a copy of a post from Seashell that she posted to another member about the FCE:


I as physical therapist I used to administer Functional Capacity Evaulations (FCE). You have nothing to worry about. The FCE is not a demanding procedure nor anything that you need to be concerned or anxious about.

In its most simple form, a FCE is an assessment of how your body moves in completing movement strategies that we employ day to day in activities of daily living, self care, and work-related tasks as may be relevant to you. Ex. Picking up a box with 3 pounds and placing it on a shelf at waist height. The test will assess your flexibility and strength and how your body correographs its movements.

It can provide valuable information regarding how best to devise a rehabilitation program with the focus on regaining an ability to participate in life, hobbies, and work. The FCE focuses on practicalities Looking at flexibility, strength, and range of motion as precursors to functional movement strategies that we employ everyday to accomplish daily tasks.

I would look at a FCE as a positive step in piecing together how to reclaim your life.
- Karen -


CP, your ortho is trying to help you by having the FCE. This evaluation will be valuable to show restrictions. As Pitmom stated, they look at your type of work. So, this eval should help you.

Take care.
Susie
Moderator in Chronic Pain & Psoriasis Forums

ChronicPain1970
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2017
Total Posts : 19
   Posted 10/30/2017 8:52 AM (GMT -7)   
Thank you, folks. I assumed as much but just wanted to see if there were any wide ranging variations of the FCE. My Ortho is fabulous and I just had “a feeling” that he was trying to help me somehow.

As of recently, I’m on 0 (zero) lb weight restriction. I’ve seen a lot of weight restrictions but never “cannot lift, pull, push, etc...with right arm”. I’m 6 months post-op from my 3rd shoulder surgery of early April 2017. Of course, it’s spot on because I can only complete some tasks with 2lb weights but it causes significant pain. *I just want to compliment everyone on here that are so helpful, willing to share knowledge & just plain nice!!!*

straydog
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 15150
   Posted 10/30/2017 9:13 AM (GMT -7)   
CP, the FCE gives a much broader explanation on a persons's ability to function. A dr can write a note stating someone has specific restrictions. In some instances I have seen employers blow these notes off. The FCE is much more detailed than saying so & so cannot lift over this or that.

I am glad that we were able to give you some good information & hopefully we helped ease your mind a little over the FCE.

Take care.
Susie
Moderator in Chronic Pain & Psoriasis Forums
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