Injuries resulting in amputation *
Personal injury claims * resulting in amputation can occur as a result of workplace accidents, road traffic accidents or accidents in a public place *. Amputation is the surgical removal of a limb due to a medical illness or trauma. Amputation is a last resort for any medical team as the consequences have a permanent effect on a persons’ quality of life. Furthermore, it can have a psychological effect on a person’s mental health, often resulting in post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
The aftermath of an injury where a limb was amputated requires months of rehabilitation, learning how to use a prosthetic and adjusting to their altered circumstances. If the injury sustained which led to an amputation happened through no fault of your own it may be possible that you are eligible for a legal remedy. To find out more information or have any queries surrounding a specific topic you can get in touch and have a confidential discussion surrounding your situation with our team of legal professionals.
Traumatic amputation refers to situations where a sudden, violent and unexpected incident causes a person to lose a limb. In these cases, medical treatment is usually very quick to attend the scene of the accident. Thus increasing the persons chance of recovery and in some cases the limb may be reattached. In cases where the limb cannot be reattached, the amputee with generally have to undergo surgery. Amputations are common in the following accidents:
- Dangerous machinery accidents
- Car accidents
- Accidents involving explosions
- Debris falling from a height
- Trapping accidents – trapped in a building or car
Surgical amputation is common practice in cases where blood supply to the injured limb is lost which leads to a condition called ‘necrosis’ (where the cells in the tissue within the limb dies).
Surgical amputation is generally considered a last resort and may be necessary after a traumatic injury where bone and tissue have been badly damages to the point where reconstruction is not an option. It may be necessary on the day of the accident but in some cases it may be necessary weeks later if the person does not heal. After necrosis sets in and their condition deteriorates and the limb loses its function.
Areas of Amputation
- Partial foot amputation – removal of one or more toes. This amputation will have n effect on the persons walking and balancing abilities
- Ankle disarticulation – removal of the foot at the ankle
- Below the knee amputations (transtibial) – amputation of the leg below the knee. This type of amputation allows the amputee to retain their knee function.
- Above the knee amputations (transfemoral) – amputation of the leg above the knee.
- Hip disarticulation – remove of the entire leg up to the hip joint.
- Hemipelvectomy (transpelvic) – removal of the entire leg including part of the pelvis
- Partial hand amputation – removal of fingertips and other parts of the fingers or thumb. Loosing a thumb means the person will be left without the ability to grasp objects.
- Metacarpal amputation – removal of the entire hand, leaving the wrist intact
- Wrist disarticulation – removal of the entire hand and wrist
- Below the elbow amputation (transradial) – partial removal of the arm below the elbow joint
- Elbow disarticulation – amputation of the forearm at the elbow
- Above elbow amputation – removal of the arm above the elbow
- Shoulder disarticulation – remove of the entire arm including the shoulder blade and collar bone
Accidents on the Road *
A car accident of large scale can pin and trap a driver against a vehicle or any other obstruction. This means that the emergency services may have to amputate a limb to release an individual from a trapped area.
Some examples of road traffic accidents resulting in amputation have been:
- Car accidents
- Passenger accidents
- Bus accidents
- Bike accidents
- Motorcycle accidents
- Pedestrians struck by traffic
In these cases, making a claim involves the following steps:
- An ambulance should be called to the scene immediately and the injured person will be taken to hospital for treatment immediately
- The Gardai should have been called to the scene and report filed with them
- It is important to establish who is at fault for the accident, therefore you will need find out the details of the driver at fault
- Call a road traffic accident solicitor * to discuss how to move forward
Workplace Accidents *
Amputation injuries *in the workplace are more common in industrial or construction areas of work, such as building sites, warehouses, farms and those who work with dangerous machinery. The cause of these injuries is usually due to a lack of safety mechanisms being implemented, inadequate training, inadequate or lack of personal protective equipment or negligence employers/employees. An example of this consists of no safety guards around dangerous machinery, a lack of supervision and adequate training supplied.
Amputation injuries * can occur in the workplace because of the following causes:
- Wet floors
- Uneven flooring
- Broken or inadequate handrails on stairs
- Falls from a height
- Lack of training provided
- Inadequate lighting
- Lack of or inadequate personal protective equipment
- Working with dangerous machinery
In such cases, liability may rest on the employer if it is proven that they did not provide a hazard free working environment. When pursuing a workplace accident claim * follow these steps:
- Seek medical attention immediately
- Report the incident to your manager
- Take pictures of your injuries
- Take pictures of the scene, clearly showing the cause of the accident
- Request CCTV footage where possible
- Take details of any witnesses
- Speak with a Work Accident Solicitor *
A person can suffer a serious injury to a limb and attempt to make a full recovery from it. However, the limb can experience in infection of a high strength which may result in
amputation. The amputation prevents the infection from spreading around the body.
What to do if you are involved in an accident
Seek medical attention
No matter how minor the accident may seem at the time, if a person suffers an injury it is advisable to seek medical attention. Any delay on a diagnosis or treatment could impact on the outcome of events.
Record and report details of the accident
Once the individual is in a medically stable condition it is crucially important to document all details possible of the accident. This will prevent any key elements being forgotten and the accident can be reported to the authorities. Some of the details that should be included in the report are:
- Time and date of the accident
- Weather conditions at the time
- Circumstances that caused the accident
- Photographic evidence
Speak with a Personal Injury Solicitor
If you are contemplating bringing forward legal proceedings it is advisable that you have a discussion with a solicitor first. If an application is made for a claim without having consulted a legal practitioner there is a possibility that you could miss a vital step of the process.
Legal Time Limits
The general rule for all personal injury cases * is usually that the injured party has a time period of two years less one day from the date of the accident to make a claim *. Contacting a solicitor to discuss your case will help you determine how long you have left to make a claim. In the scenario where it is a child that suffers the injury, the two year time period commences on their 18th birthday. It is also possible for an adult to act on behalf of the underage child, known as The Next Friend Rule.
TELL US ABOUT YOUR CASE
At Tracey Solicitors, our dedicated team of personal injury solicitors * have years of experience in helping people who suffered an injury due to the negligence of another party. We understand the injuries (physically and emotionally) that you have suffered and have supported many people in similar situations proceed with personal injury claims * in Ireland over the past 30 years.
If you are considering to make an injury that resulted in amputation claim *, feel free to contact 01 649 9900 for a confidential discussion and tell us about your case. Or reach out via email to firstname.lastname@example.org and ask any questions or queries that you may have. Visit the Personal Injury & Accident FAQ’s for additional understanding .