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Your injury need not be caused by an accident -- such as a fall from a ladder -- to be covered by workers' compensation. Many workers receive compensation for injuries that are caused by overuse or misuse over a long period of time (for example, repetitive stress injuries such as carpal tunnel syndrome or chronic back problems). You may also be compensated for some illnesses and diseases that are the gradual result of work conditions, such as heart conditions, lung disease, and stress-related digestive problems. For more information on repetitive stress injuries, see the Nolo article Repetitive Stress Injuries in the Workplace.