California Amputation Injury Attorney

By Prev Info - February 19, 2022

 An Overview of Amputation, Types of Amputation Injuries, How They Occur & Statistics

Amputation Overview

An amputation is the loss of some or all of a body part, either through accidental severing or surgical removal and is a severe and life-threatening injury with long-term consequences,. At best, an amputation causes permanent disability and, at worst, it may lead to serious medical complications and even death.

The accidental severing of part of or all of a limb or other body part is called a traumatic amputation. Victims of traumatic amputations may experience post-traumatic stress syndrome, nerve damage, complications due to shock and blood loss, severe scarring or deformed tissue and bone in the area of the injury and shadow symptoms such as phantom limb pain.

A surgical amputation is when a limb or body part is removed surgically as a result of an injury or disease. Surgical amputations are only slightly less serious than traumatic amputations and both types of amputations have a significant negative impact on the victim's physical and emotional well-being.

All those who have suffered accidents resulting in either traumatic or surgical amputations have experienced life-altering, catastrophic injuries which will affect them and their loved ones for the rest of their lives and their suffering deserves some form of compensation. Amputation injuries caused in full or in part by the negligence or recklessness of another person or a defect in a machine or product may be compensated for in part through legal action.

Types of Amputation Injuries

Amputation injuries fall into two main categories: partial and complete amputations, and two sub categories: upper limb and lower limb amputations.

A partial amputation occurs when a part of the affected limb remains attached. The remainder of the appendage may be only tissue or combination of bone and tissue. Partial amputations adapt to prostheses fitting and use more easily than complete amputations.

A complete amputation occurs when the injured limb or body part is entirely severed, all the way up to or slightly beyond the joint. Complete amputations make prosthetics more difficult to use.

In both partial and complete amputations, it is sometimes possible to reattach the severed limb or digit. Reattachment depends on several factors, including the length of time before the wound was treated, which body part was severed and the overall condition of both the severed limb and the victim after the accident. In the case of the reattachment, the surgeon will do his or her best to reattach the entire limb. If that is not feasible, then he or she will strive to reattach as much of the severed part as possible to enable maximum usage of a prosthetic device.

Upper limb amputations include severing of the fingers, the hands, part or all of the forearm, part or all of the upper arm and part or all of the shoulder joint, shoulder blade and/or collarbone. Upper limb amputations are the most common work place injury amputations.

Lower limb amputations include partial or full severing of the foot, partial or full severing of the lower leg between the knee and ankle and partial or full severing of the thigh and/or hip. Lower limb amputations are more common in motor vehicle and military accidents.

How Accidental Amputations Occur

Traumatic amputations and accidents leading to surgical amputations most commonly occur on a farm or factory setting and are normally caused by misused or defective power tools. Automobile and motorcycle accidents are the second leading cause of amputations, and the third leading cause is construction site accidents. The fourth main cause of amputations is dog and other animal bites followed by military accidents as the fifth main cause. The body parts most likely to be amputated are the ears, nose, arms, legs, hands and feet.

Amputation Statistics

At least 1.7 million people living in the United States today have suffered an accidental amputation. Approximately 30,000 traumatic amputations occur in the United States annually.

68.8% of traumatic amputations occur to the upper limbs.

4 out of every 5 victims of accidental amputations are male and males between the ages of 15 and 30 years old are the highest risk.

Factory and farm workers as a group suffer the highest incidences of traumatic amputation injuries, followed by motor vehicle drivers or passengers involved in motorcycle and automobile accidents.

 Accidents involving power tools, saws and lawn mowers are the third largest cause of amputation injuries.





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