This is a case under the Workmen's Compensation Law. The Commission denied compensation; the Circuit Court affirmed the Commission; and the employee brings this appeal.
On December 4, 1951, appellant, Foster, while employed by appellee, Fort Smith Cotton Oil Company, received an accidental injury—a blow on the head—which rendered him unconscious for a few minutes. After receiving first aid, he returned to his work; but in a few days began to complain of violent headaches, the like of which he had never previously suffered. On Decemeber 20th he became unable to work. Subsequent examinations disclosed hypertension, although a physical examination approximately twenty months before the trauma had shown his blood pressure to be normal. It is agreed that he is now totally and permanently disabled because of hypertension.
The claim then went to the full Commission and additional testimony was heard. The Commission had the claimant examined by Dr. John E. Gruetter, who made a 3-page report to the Chairman of the Commission. Then the claimant offered further medical evidence in an effort to overcome the conclusions of Dr. Gruetter. The main issue was whether the claimant's hypertension was the result of the blow on the head which he received. Dr. Gruetter's 3-page report to the Chairman of the Commission concluded with this language:
Dr. Gruetter's report is substantial evidence on which the Commission could base its findings that the claimant's present disability was not the result of the trauma. The Commission did so find; and the rule is well settled that when the Commission's findings are supported by substantial evidence, they have the force and effect of a jury verdict. Chicago Mill & Lbr. Co. v. Fulcher, 221 Ark. 903, 256 S.W.2d 723, and Starrett v. Namour, 219 Ark. 463, 242 S.W.2d 963, are only a few of the cases where the Commission's findings on medical matters were held to be supported by substantial evidence. The rule of these cases is applicable here.
Appellant says that Dr. Gruetter's report should now be ruled out because it is not verified and appellant relies on Section 23(c) of the Initiated Act No. 4 of 1948 (being our present Compensation Law), and found in § 81-1323(c) Cumulative Pocket Supplement Ark. Stats., which reads:
But appellant is not now in any position to raise such objection about Dr. Gruetter's report being unverified, because appellant offered no such objection before the Commission. If such objection had been made, Dr. Gruetter could have been called before the Commission to verify his report and submit to cross-examination. Instead of so objecting, appellant took the testimony of another Doctor in an effort to overcome the conclusions of Dr. Gruetter; and in such questioning, reference was made to Dr.
The Commission accepted Dr. Gruetter's conclusions; and this case is ruled by those cases which hold that the factual findings of the Workmen's Compensation Commission will not be disturbed when supported by substantial evidence.
HOLT, J., not participating.