An amputation injury is life-altering and can affect the victim’s emotional, physical, and financial well-being. From adjusting to a new life to making home modifications, regularly visiting the doctors for extensive medical treatment, and facing emotional challenges, an amputation injury can be tiring and, in most cases, depressing.
Ehline Law and our amputation personal injury attorneys have more than 15 years of superior track records in helping injured victims get the financial compensation they deserve following their injuries. We understand how challenging life can be for a victim suffering from an amputation injury, especially the legal hurdles they must face when pursuing a personal injury case to recover compensation.
Contact our California amputation injury attorneys for a free consultation to discuss your case and learn more about your rights as an injured victim.
Different Types of Amputations
There are two major types of amputations, and include the following:
- Upper extremity amputations: An upper extremity amputation involves the upper limbs (hands, arms, or fingers), and some of the common types of upper extremity amputations include digit amputation, metacarpal amputation, trans-radial amputation, transhumeral amputation, and shoulder disarticulation.
- Lower extremity amputations: These types of amputations involve the lower limbs (toes, feet, and legs), and some of the common types of lower extremity amputations include partial foot amputation, digit amputation, transtibial amputation, and transfemoral amputation.
Common Causes of Amputation
According to a recent 2022 study titled “Lower Extremity Amputation” by Molina, CS, and Faulk, JB, 150,000 patients undergo lower extremity amputations in the United States, with the leading cause of amputations being medical diseases, such as vascular disease, diabetes mellitus, and others. However, trauma is also one of the major causes of amputation injuries in the United States.
A traumatic amputation can happen due to an accident or an unplanned surgery following an accident where a doctor has no other option but to amputate a limb to save the victim’s life.
Some of the most common causes of amputation include the following.
Motor Vehicle Accidents
A motorcycle accident, truck, or any other traffic collision can crush a victim’s limbs, requiring a medical professional to amputate them to prevent further medical complications.
When dealing with heavy machinery, especially at construction sites, factories, and farms, negligence or human error can lead to an accident, causing catastrophic injury to the victim’s limbs.
Falling from heights, getting crushed between moving vehicles or equipment, explosions, or malfunctioning equipment can also lead to amputation injuries at work.
Electrical Shocks and Burns
Contact with underground wiring or power lines or a breaker system malfunctioning can lead to electrocution. Currents above 1000 volts can cause serious burns that may require amputation of the affected limb.
Businesses failing to warn about electrical hazards or provide safety gear can risk the lives of customers and employees.
Poorly designed products such as power tools can malfunction and severely damage the user’s body part requiring amputation. There is also a risk of explosion when using poorly designed devices with batteries.
In 2015, 23-year-old Vicente Garza, a man from Bakersfield, California, suffered severe injuries after the e-cigarette he was smoking exploded in his hand. Doctors had no choice but to amputate his left index finger, ultimately affecting his life as his left hand was his dominant hand.
Dog bites can lead to severe infection if not treated properly, increasing the risk of amputation. Other accidents can also require amputation, such as exposure to hazardous chemicals at work.
Sometimes, a medical provider and their doctor may fail to follow medical standards, leading to complications during surgeries requiring a surgical amputation.
If the medical provider or the doctor’s negligence resulted in your amputation injury, you should consider pursuing a medical malpractice claim to recover the damages.
How an Amputation Injury Can Affect Your Life
Amputations are one of the most life-changing injuries as they create new challenges and force the victims to adopt a new way of life.
Amputations can affect not only a victim’s personal life but also their work, relationships, and even their ability to be independent and enjoy life.
The psychological impact of an amputation can lead to depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, or body image issues and cause the victim to isolate themselves, adversely affecting their social life.
Besides the psychological impact of amputation injuries, injured victims must live with common side effects associated with an amputation, such as:
- Chronic pain arising from damage to the nerves
- Phantom limb pain
- Mobility problems and coordination issues
- Increased risk of falls
- Fatal blood clots.
Although injured victims may be able to control these side effects associated with limb loss through medications, therapy, and rehabilitation, some impact of amputation injuries can remain with the victim for life.
How You Can Adjust after Your Amputation Injury
The most important thing to note is that your feelings following your amputation injury are valid, as it is common for amputees to go through intense emotional distress.
You may feel lost, depressed, or have a mourning period, which is entirely acceptable, especially when an amputation injury affects your independence.
However, it is also crucial to understand that there is hope, and there are people with amputation injuries who work towards achieving a better quality of life. It may be challenging, but modern science and technology can help you live better.
The following tips will help you cope with your amputation injury and give you the hope to move on and live a fulfilling life.
Ask for Help
There is nothing wrong or shame in asking for help, especially when you’ve recently suffered an amputation injury. It can take time to become independent, but until then, ask for help and depend on your family members and friends whenever necessary.
Embrace Your Feelings
Suppressing your feelings can harm you emotionally. Expressing your emotions, whether sad, angry, or depressed, is the first step in your recovery journey. Embrace your feelings and seek help from a therapist or adopt beneficial coping strategies.
Whether it is your family members, friends, or medical staff, you have people around you to support and help you heal. Rely on them for your emotional and social needs and ask for support in your daily routine.
Staying healthy and exercising aids in a faster recovery and a stable mind. It would help if you worked with a rehabilitation specialist on the exercises that can help you gain mobility and speak to a nutritionist about curating a healthy diet.
Remember, a healthy mind and body can help you overcome most challenges associated with an amputation injury.
Find Your Purpose
Suffering an amputation injury should not define you; you should strive to find your purpose in life. Start by setting small goals and work towards achieving them.
Create a Routine
Have a daily routine, as it can keep you busy from all the negative thoughts and help you achieve the milestones you set for yourself. Self-care is integral to recovery and living a happy life, so take time to do the things you love.
Focus on the Positive
There is no point in dwelling over the past and your previous life. Focusing on the positive and everything you can do can help you move on from your amputation injury and live a better life.
Can You Recover Damages Following Your Amputation Injury?
Under personal injury law, if your amputation injury occurred due to another’s negligence or recklessness, you may be able to pursue the following damages in a personal injury claim:
- Medical bills (Hospitalizations, physical therapy, medication, specialized help, life-long care, and other medical expenses)
- Lost wages (Current and past lost wages and future loss of earning potential)
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Reduced quality of life
There are many damages an injured victim can recover after their limb loss. Every personal injury claim is unique, and an experienced personal injury attorney can help evaluate the damages you may be eligible for.
What to Do After a California Amputation Injury
If you’ve suffered an injury that required amputation, you must immediately speak to an experienced personal injury attorney to learn more about your rights and legal options from a tier-one California amputation lawyer with experience in advanced medical technologies and traumatic amputations.
An amputation of your thigh bone, or complete amputation, can devastate your life, and if you don’t have legal representation, you may face further challenges and hurdles affecting your financial status if an injury or disfigurement results.
A skilled personal injury attorney can help assess your case and determine whether you have grounds for pursuing a personal injury claim or a lawsuit, as well as vocational retraining after a life-changing event suffered by a patient.
If you’ve suffered an amputation injury due to another’s negligence or recklessness, an experienced personal injury attorney can help increase your chances of recovering financial compensation. Ehline can help you pursue compensation for pedestrian accidents, motorcycle accidents, and other injury cases under California law and even Texas law.
Handling a California Amputation Claim with an Experienced California Amputation Injury Attorney
A claim process following your amputation injury can be time-consuming and complex. If you’re unsure what you’re doing, you may jeopardize your only opportunity to recover compensation.
Accident victims often feel that filing a claim is easy; they need to fill in the form, get a call from the insurance company, and receive a settlement check. However, there is a lot that goes into the claims process. Even filing claims can be challenging, especially if you’re not sure what evidence can help bolster your personal injury claim.
The following are some of the critical components of the claims process:
- Investigating the accident to determine the liable party(s) to pursue a personal injury claim against.
- Gathering key documents and taking medical professionals’ statements on the injuries’ value to determine the case’s worth.
- Gathering and compiling evidence to support your claim and build a strong personal injury case.
- Following the legal process and filing the personal injury claim to seek justice in the court with jurisdiction over the case.
- Serving notices to the defendant and other relevant parties to ensure compliance with the legal process.
- Handling the insurance company and negotiating a fair settlement.
- If the insurance company fails to offer a fair settlement for your amputation injury case, you should file a personal injury lawsuit in the relevant court.
When an accident victim suffers injuries in an accident, their main priority is to get the medical attention they need and to follow the medical treatments recommended by their doctor for optimal health and wellness.
During this stage, it can be tiring and stressful to start the legal process and deal with the insurance company, which is why it is essential to discuss your case with our personal injury attorneys and let them handle the amputation claim process. At the same time, you focus on your recovery, even after the loss of an entire arm or another severed body part. Our amputation lawyers can help with construction accidents and any related missing body part cases or other life-changing injuries and pain and suffering caused by someone else’s negligence.
Schedule a Free Consultation with Ehline Law Amputation Injury Lawyers
Whether you’ve suffered a traumatic trans-radial amputation in a car accident, medical malpractice, or due to another’s negligence, contact us at (833) LETS-SUE for a free consultation with our experienced California amputation injury attorney, as you may be able to seek compensation for your negligence claim. We may be able to get you money for your prosthetic device and for any misdiagnosis over your lifetime. We also offer virtual consultations to help you or your loved one once they are an amputee seeking benefits, even for noneconomic damages and workers compensation matters.
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Michael Ehline is an inactive U.S. Marine and world-famous legal historian. Michael helped draft the Cruise Ship Safety Act and has won some of U.S. history’s largest motorcycle accident settlements. Together with his legal team, Michael and the Ehline Law Firm collect damages on behalf of clients. We pride ourselves on being available to answer your most pressing and difficult questions 24/7. We are proud sponsors of the Paul Ehline Memorial Motorcycle Ride and a Service Disabled Veteran Operated Business. (SDVOB.) We are ready to fight.
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