Being involved in an accident of any type is scary and when injuries are severe, recuperation can take a long time. The range of serious injuries that can result from even a minor accident can include brain injuries, spinal injuries, paralysis, or even loss of a limb. Finding the way to get back to a normal life after incurring these devastating injuries is often quite difficult and can take months or even years – if not a lifetime. Losing a limb not only requires physical recovery and rehabilitation, but it is often accompanied by a need for mental recovery as well.
What Is An Amputation?
Amputation is the removal of a limb, or part of a limb. The reasons one might require an amputation can include disease prevention, tumor removal, or treatment of injury. Sometimes an amputation is necessary due to medical conditions, particularly those in which the patient suffers from poor circulation. The poor blood flow ends up causing disease and death of the tissue in the affected limb and, without amputation, the condition can be worsened. Suffering a serious injury in a car accident in which your arm or leg is crushed can require the amputation of the damaged limb if there is no way to save it. Workplace accidents, particularly for those who are involved in hard physical labor such as construction work, or working with heavy equipment, can also result in injuries that require the amputation of a limb.
Closed Versus Open Flap Amputations
Depending upon the type and extent of injury to the limb, a surgeon can perform either a closed or an open flap amputation. With a closed amputation, the surgeon closes the flaps after all of the dead tissue is removed. Performed mostly in cases in which there is little chance of infection, the wound is sewn shut right away. With this type of amputation, the recovery process can begin more quickly and the patient can be fitted with a prosthetic limb shortly after the surgery. In other scenarios, though, such as when there is a higher risk of infection, the surgeon may opt to perform an open flap amputation. In this case, the skin is pulled back from the amputation site and left open after the procedure. This allows the medical professionals to be able to continue to clean off an additional infected tissue. Once it is determined that the infected tissue has all been removed, the skin flaps are closed.
Risks And Complications Of Amputations
As with any type of surgery, there are significant risks involved. For older patients, the risks are higher if there is hardening of the arteries, and the chance that the patient will die as a result of the surgery is between 10 and 20 percent. For younger patients or for those requiring an amputation as a result of an injury or to remove a tumor, the risks of this surgery are lower. The extent of the amputation also affects the riskiness – smaller amputations are less risky than larger ones; for example, amputation of a finger will have a lower level of risk than amputation of an entire arm.
Complications of amputation surgery, obviously, include the chance of dying as a result of the surgery. In addition to this most serious complication, others exist such as infection, heart attacks, or strokes. Treatment for infection is usually through a course of antibiotics. Another complication can be contractures – conditions that prevent the patient from being able to straighten a joint in the limb. This can cause difficulties with use of a prosthetic and a smooth recuperation after amputation. Deep venous thrombosis can result from the immobility during and after the surgery; when this occurs, the patient is most often treated with blood thinners to prevent clots. One of the most interesting complications that can arise as a result of an amputation is phantom limb pain and, unfortunately, most amputees do experience this to some extent. Feeling sensations such as pain in the amputated limb is common and for some patients it can be quite serious. Treatment for this phenomenon is usually a course of painkillers.
The Jaklitsch Law Group Can Help With Your Amputation Case
If you or a loved one has suffered a serious injury such as an amputation as a result of an accident, the Jaklitsch Law Group can help you obtain compensation for your loss. Our attorneys have helped clients throughout Maryland and neighboring areas with cases just like yours. Let our experience work for you as you pursue the results you deserve. Do not wait to start the journey towards your recovery – contact the Jaklitsch Law Group now and set up your appointment to speak with our legal professionals today.