Amputations are one of the most devastating events a person can endure. An amputation may be caused by several influences, but most commonly, they are the result of serious injuries or illnesses. An amputation is removal of all or part of a limb. A minor amputation may be losing a finger or toe to frostbite. Major amputations often result from wartime injuries, and victims may lose one or all of their entire limbs.
LIVING WITH AMPUTATION
The physical effects of an amputation are quite apparent. The victim loses that part of his or her body forever. The psychological toll of losing part of one’s body can be far more difficult to manage for many. Amputations often leave several lasting psychological effects, including post-traumatic stress disorder and phantom limb syndrome.
Phantom limb pain (or phantom pain) describes the sensation of pain that seems to come from the missing appendage. Patients who have lost an arm may describe stinging in the fingertips that they no longer have. Those who have lost a leg may complain of a foot cramp in the missing foot. Phantom pain often diminishes over time, but it can last for years. Treating phantom pain is more difficult than regular pain as well. Medications need to be tailored to interrupting the pain signals from the brain rather than focusing on localized pain in certain body parts.
Prosthetics may be worn to replace the lost limb and restore a moderate degree of function. Prosthetic technology has grown by huge strides in recent years, and amputees today are being outfitted with bionics that give them a great deal of mobility—which was not possible a few years ago. However, even in light of these amazing new breakthroughs, living with an amputation is not easy in any way. The effects vary by patient.
KNOW YOUR RIGHTS
In some cases, negligent actions can result in grievous injuries, and when those injuries require amputations, the victims must be aware of their legal options. The costs of medical treatment, ongoing rehabilitation, prosthetics, pain management, lost wages from time spent out of work, diminished earning capacity, and pain and suffering (both physical and psychological) will tally up quickly. If an amputation results from another person’s carelessness, the victim should not have to shoulder those costs alone.
If the accident occurred in the workplace, worker’s compensation benefits may provide a modicum of relief and pay for lost wages and medical expenses, but they cover little else. If the accident that caused an amputation resulted from a defective product or piece of machinery, a product liability claim against the manufacturer may be in order. If a known safety issue that the victim’s employer did not correct caused the injury, the company or manager may be found negligent.
No matter what the situation may entail, if you or a loved one has suffered an amputation as the result of another person or entity’s reckless or irresponsible behavior, you should not have to bear the burden of your injury alone. The responsible parties must be held accountable for their actions. At Nielsen Law Firm, we have proudly represented the Houston, TX area for over 30 years, and we are ready to fight through even the most complex litigation.
Amputations are serious injuries, and it can take victims a long time to adjust to their new lifestyle. However, if another party’s actions caused the damage, it is imperative to take legal action as soon as possible. Reach out to the professionals at the Nielsen Law Firm in Houston, TX for a free initial case evaluation. We will discuss the details of your case and let you know what options are available. Let us handle your legal issues while you focus on healing.