Amputation accidents are some of the most traumatizing and life-altering events that one can suffer. Apart from the physical struggles and disabilities caused by losing an arm, leg, or another body part, the victim will almost certainly endure negative mental and emotional consequences such as decreased enjoyment of life.
We know that amputation can introduce enormous personal and financial challenges into your life, which is why the Myrtle Beach personal injury lawyers at the Maguire Law Firm work hard to advocate on behalf of amputee accident victims.
What Are the Most Common Types of Amputation Accidents?
Any sort of personal injury, if it’s severe enough, has the potential to leave the victim with an amputated hand, foot, or some other body part. But certain accidents are more likely than others to result in amputation, such as:
- Automobile accidents, including those involving cars, buses, trucks, motorcycles, and bicycles
- Industrial and construction accidents where heavy machinery and equipment are present
- Electrocutions and burns which can cause irreversible physical trauma to limbs
- Medical malpractice, which is negligent medical practice that makes amputation unavoidable
- Defective consumer products, including malfunctioning products or items that lack proper safety warnings
Negligent conduct is usually to blame for these and other causes of amputation injuries. An amputation lawyer’s job is to understand how the injury occurred and acquire the evidence that points to negligence.
Should an Accident Victim Have a Limb Amputated?
The decision to amputate is a serious one that a medical professional must make in light of the victim’s health and the nature of the injury. Amputation can become necessary if the life of the patient is at risk. It is also needed if the limb is so damaged that either full reattachment is not possible or blood flow is lost. Reattachment can be done in some cases, depending on how bad the accident was.
Lost blood flow, however, presents a secondary risk called necrosis. This occurs when, because of the lack of blood, tissue cells in the limb start to die. Not only can the limb itself not be saved but leaving it attached risks significant infection. Amputation is then the only option to allow proper healing.
Be sure to have a full and open discussion with your physician to make sure all avenues besides amputation have been explored. If your doctor advises amputation, then it’s time to learn how your health – including not just physical but mental and emotional – will be affected by the procedure.
Potential Avenues for Loss of Limb Compensation
When accidents result from the negligence of another party, that individual or entity can be forced to pay damages, as discussed in more detail below. One way to seek damages is by filing a personal injury lawsuit. Typically, the at-fault party’s insurance company would be responsible for covering the victim’s losses if the party is determined to be liable.
Sometimes, especially with automobile accidents, the responsible party either doesn’t have insurance or doesn’t have enough insurance. The minimum amount of coverage is only $25,000 in South Carolina, which doesn’t pay for much. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t other potential sources of compensation. Experienced amputation lawyers will look at alternate ways to cover the victim’s damages.
For instance, the at-fault party could be held personally liable. If the amputation accident was due to a car wreck, you may be able to use your own uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage if you have it. In many accidents, more than one party can be held liable. Using the car accident example, there may have been a defect with the automobile that points to the manufacturer’s responsibility.
When accidents take place on the job site, victims generally have the right to file a workers’ compensation claim. A major difference between a personal injury lawsuit and workers’ compensation claim is that negligence or fault are not at issue with the latter. Workers’ compensation can pay for medical bills, lost income, disability, and more.
The Maguire Law Firm practices both personal injury and workers’ compensation. We’re ready to review your case, explain your options, and get to work seeking the damages you deserve.
What Types of Damages May Be Available?
Accident claims, lawsuits, and settlements can pay for a variety of damages resulting from amputation accidents, including:
- Medical bills from emergency room visits, doctor appointments, prescription medications, follow-up care, and more
- Amputation, along with reconstructive surgery
- Prosthetic devices, mobility aids, and adaptive medical equipment
- Training and maintenance that may be necessary for prosthetics and equipment
- Occupational, physical, and mental health therapy
- Disability benefits, along with necessary equipment such as wheelchair lifts
- Lost current wages, lost future wages, and lost future earning ability
- Pain and suffering
- Reduced quality of life
Tips for Adjusting to Amputation
We work hard to help our clients get their lives back to normal or as close as possible. These are some suggestions for making the necessary life adjustments following an amputation:
- Do not neglect your physical health: Be upfront with your primary care physician and other doctors about any medical complications or problems you experience due to the amputation.
- Do not neglect your mental and emotional health: The loss of a limb can do serious harm to an individual’s mental and emotional health, so be sure you consult a professional who can help with both.
- Expect challenges: Losing a limb will cause difficulties and adjusting to them will take time, so don’t rush yourself or see these challenges as anything but normal.
- Consider joining a support group: The good news in a situation like this is that you aren’t alone, and you can seek a support group through a religious, community, or social organization.
Hire Maguire for Your Myrtle Beach Amputation Injury
Finally, don’t delay talking to a skilled amputation attorney who can explain your legal rights and help you seek the maximum available compensation. That’s where the Maguire Law Firm comes in. To learn more or to get started on your case, give us a call at 843-894-3502 today, or contact us online.