Philadelphia Amputations Lawyer
The weeks and months following a traumatic amputation are full of multi-directional challenges, all of which can transform a person from who they once were.
There are many examples of how one wrong decision results in an irreparable loss of bodily function, and potential shifts in personal relationships and career opportunities. For some unfortunate victims of trauma, independence is lost overnight.
Failure to act appropriately is negligence—when negligence causes harm to another person, in most cases, it is actionable.
The Philadelphia amputation lawyers at The Levin Firm understand the frustration and concern our clients have concerning needless pain and the magnitude of lifestyle changes they face following the loss of a limb or digit from an accident, or due to a defective product or medical negligence. We realize it is a long road to navigate. Our lawyers have the experience and resources to help our clients pursue fair compensation for their immediate needs and to help them set the tone for their financial future. If you suspect your amputation was a tragedy that never should have happened, reach out: We may be able to help.
Possible Causes of Amputation Injuries In Philadelphia
Nationally, over 500 people a day lose a limb. Amputation, no matter the cause, is a catastrophic event. Although the majority of the reasons for amputation stem from underlying vascular conditions and diabetes, according to the Amputee Coalition, about 45 percent stem from traumatic events.
Managing the risk of complications is a time-consuming and long-term process for a victim of a traumatic loss of a limb, and gaining mobility and independence can take its toll on both the victim and his or her entire family. There is no typical reaction to amputation, it is, however, very normal to be overwhelmed.
Injury due to accidents
A recent annual report from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation shows slightly over 10,000 motor vehicle accidents in Philadelphia County in a calendar year. Catastrophic injuries are those that lead to permanent disfigurement, disability, or death. Depending on the severity of a car vs. car accident, a catastrophic injury such as the need for amputation is certainly possible in an automobile accident in Philadelphia.
Among the more common reasons for auto accidents are:
- Distracted driving
- Impaired driving
- Weather conditions, roadway debris, malfunctioning traffic signals
Any time an 80,000-pound commercial vehicle collides with a car or motorcycle, the resulting catastrophic injuries can wreck your life. The sheer weight disparity between a car and a truck makes any injury more serious.
Truck drivers do not always have the luxury of staying off the roadways in inclement weather, and they are almost always rushing to meet a deadline. On the best of days, a large commercial truck is hard to maneuver, it takes longer to stop than a car does, and truck driver fatigue is a common cause for concern.
Additional causes of car vs. truck accidents are:
- The likelihood of brake issues
- Truck drivers are often unfamiliar with the roads
- Frequent distractions
Injury due to a defective product
Amputation accidents are often caused by poorly designed, unreasonably dangerous, or negligently manufactured consumer products such as:
- Defective motor vehicle parts/airbags/tires
- Machinery/ industrial/ farming equipment
- Medical or surgical devices
Injury due to medical negligence
Avoidable medical errors are one of the causes of amputation. When a healthcare professional deviates from an acceptable standard of care, sometimes a person loses a part of themselves. Medical negligence is never acceptable, and always a reason to contact a Philadelphia personal injury attorney.
At The Levin Firm, we have the resolve and resources to fight aggressively for our clients in a quest for justice. We value the relationship we have with a vast network of medical experts, rehabilitation therapists, and economists to develop a fair and equitable claim for financial compensation for catastrophic injury.
A legal cause for action may arise when:
- A medical professional fails to diagnose or treat an infection which eventually leads to an amputation
- A physician ignores a potentially dangerous health issue
- A surgical instrument or medical debris is unintentionally left in the body after a surgical procedure
- A surgeon operates on the wrong body part
- Failure to take into account preexisting conditions
Additionally, prescription medication errors, failure to recognize a postoperative blood clot, or unsterile medical equipment can also lead to unplanned bodily trauma resulting in amputation.
Nursing home residents often suffer amputations due to complications from pre-existing conditions such as diabetes and peripheral artery disease. However, an amputation can also result from untreated bedsores or sepsis.
Complications of Amputation
Physical complications of amputation
The most immediate physical complications of amputation are excessive bleeding, shock, and infection. In the long term, dexterity, agility, and mobility are major concerns.
Daily living can sometimes be next to impossible. Personal hygiene, dressing, and even tying a pair of sneakers present daily challenges. Things a person took for granted are no longer just second nature activities. Although with time, all things may be possible, they will have to be re-learned. An amputee needs to be constantly vigilant for any signs of cardiac problems, the possibility of blood clots, and symptoms of pneumonia.
Other considerations include:
- The possibility of further surgery and rehospitalization
- Back pain and other orthopedic issues
- Balance problems
- Adapting to a prosthetic limb
The concept of phantom pain remains somewhat of a mystery, but the manifestation is an all too common occurrence following an amputation.
The brain thinks the limb is still attached to the body when the communication between the neurons in certain nerves and the brain is broken. The body can actually feel it; stress and anxiety can exacerbate the intensity of the pain, as can pressure on the residual limb.
We have heard phantom pain described as burning, tingling, stabbing, and some say it feels like they are being shocked. It is more than simple discomfort. To the victim, phantom pain is real, and it can last for months, or sometimes for years. Some victims find phantom pain stops after they receive a prosthesis, but some will have this side effect for a lifetime.
Emotional complications of amputation
Individuals whose careers depend on motor skills are more susceptible to the emotional complications of amputation.
Research tells us 32 percent -84 percent of traumatic accident amputees experience mental health challenges, including:
- Depression (10.4 percent to 63 percent)
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (3.3 percent to 56.3 percent)
- Phantom limb phenomenon (14 percent to 92 percent)
Social complications of amputation
Some amputees may experience negative societal attitudes and prejudices toward people with physical challenges. Academic and medical research shows amputees sometimes self-isolate in an attempt to withdraw socially from their community.
Some compare the loss of a limb to the loss of a spouse. Amputees often experience deep and prolonged grief when daily life is forever altered.
Damages to social well-being are compensable, as are they are to physical and emotional health. It is a necessary readjustment.
A recent medical study showed some Individuals with post-traumatic lower limb amputation:
- Experience a definite change in emotions and behaviors post amputation
- Experience negative effects on self-esteem and body image
- Believe society differentiates them Have a Felt body image and self-esteem were negatively affected,
- Have concerns about the future
- Require emotional support
- Need help with coping skills
Victims often need access to mental health professionals on a long-term basis to overcome readjustment issues such as:
- Unrealistic expectations
- Maintaining relationships
Every accident is different, every client’s story is unique, and there is no one-size-fits-all formula for determining the monetary value of a claim in Philadelphia.
Amputation cases are no exception. When a part of the body is removed, it is gone for a lifetime. There is a road to recovery—a long, painful, and expensive road. No one expects to have to take this detour from his or her anticipated life’s journey, and no one should be expected to bear the financial burden of someone else’s negligence.
Losing a body part is extraordinarily expensive. Prosthetic limbs, mobility aids such as wheelchairs, walkers, canes, and crutches do not come cheap, and they all require training and maintenance, For example, a traditional prosthetic hand can cost up to $10,000 a finger, and limbs typically need replacement every three to five years.
The legal team at The Levin Firm fights for clients who are victims of amputation. We are a formidable force with a focus on excellence, and we give each client thorough and zealous representation
We believe compensation for the loss of a limb should take into account:
- All existing medical bills
- All anticipated future medical bills
- The cost of rehabilitation, physical, and occupational therapy
- The cost of necessary home modifications
- Documented lost wages to date
- The projected cost of future lost wages, including benefits
- Pain and suffering
Pain and suffering is an all-inclusive term that may take into consideration such things as a lifetime of disfigurement, disability, and reduced quality of life.
The Potential Value of an Amputation Case in Philadelphia
The value of a personal injury case is based on:
- The specific circumstances of each case
- The type and severity of each injury
- Who caused the harm
- The amount of physical recovery possible
- The possibility of having to make a career change
- The actual cost of medical expenses to date
- The projected cost of future expenses
Who May I Hold Responsible for an Amputation Injury In Philadelphia?
Liability for an amputation injury depends on the individual circumstances of the accident or incident. Negligence is a failure to act with reasonable care. To this end, the driver of the vehicle causing the car accident may be held responsible for compensation. For industrial injuries, a product manufacturer, or distributor may be culpable, as could an employer.
Trucking fleet owners may be found responsible for a collision with a large commercial vehicle, and a homeowner could be held liable for a dog bite that results in amputation. A negligent physician or a nursing home placing profits over patient care can be named in a medical negligence lawsuit.
How A Philadelphia Amputation Attorney Can Help
If you or someone in your family is recovering from a serious accident requiring amputation, our entire staff is standing ready to help you find the best course of action to assist you during this difficult time.
At The Levin Firm:
- We offer a no-cost consultation to discuss the facts and circumstances of your accident
- We will explain the legal options available to you and your family
- We can use our network of resources to gather and review evidence in support of your case
- We can use all available data to determine who may be held liable for your injury
Our award-winning legal staff can assess the present and expected costs of your care to develop a fair and just compensation value. We pledge to explain the claims process as it unfolds, and all of your questions and concerns will be answered in a timely manner.
We value the relationships we have with our clients, and we utilize our collective experience to pursue the best possible solution for each and every client. Our goal is to help our clients receive full compensation for all losses.