Limb loss

Kansas City Traumatic Amputation and Limb Loss Attorneys

Representing catastrophic injury victims throughout Missouri and Kansas

There are few injuries more catastrophic than the loss of a body part. At Kansas City Accident Injury Attorneys, we understand that an amputation causes physical pain, may prevent you from being able to work, and often causes depression and loss of self-esteem. We know that an injury like this can and will change everything.

For the last 30 years, our personal injury attorneys have helped catastrophic injury victims in Missouri and Kansas take back control of their lives and their futures. If you have lost a limb or were forced to undergo a surgical amputation because of someone else’s negligence, we are here for you. Contact us today to get started.

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Examples of negligence leading to limb loss and traumatic amputation

In almost every case our attorneys see, the loss of a limb or body part is related to an act of negligence. The more common causes include:

  • Vehicle accidents. A car crash, truck accident or motorcycle wreck can literally shear off a body part, or cause so much damage that the victim must undergo an amputation. ATV accidents can also lead to limb loss, as they – like motorcycles – offer little protection to users.
  • Crush injuries. Catastrophic crushing incidents can occur on construction sites, manufacturing sites, or any workplace that uses press machines. They can also happen in vehicle crashes.
  • Medical malpractice. An undiagnosed infection or illness can spread, necessitating amputation. In very rare cases, a negligent medical professional may make a mistake, and amputate the wrong body part. (These rare incidents are called “never events” because they should never occur, but they sometimes do.)
  • Falling objects. Construction sites, work zones, and warehouses utilize a lot of heavy machinery and materials, and if it falls on a worker or passerby, it can necessitate an amputation. People may also be at risk of injuries from falling objects at “Big Box” stores, which tend to stack their goods on high shelves.
  • Acts of assault. Acts of physical violence can cause extensive damage to bones, nerves, and soft tissues.

What parts of the body are most often amputated?

Amputation cases resulting from negligence can involve the loss of a limb (arm or leg) or an appendage (hands, feet, fingers, and toes). Amputation may also affect other parts of your anatomy, such as an ear.

What are the initial treatments for amputations?

It’s critical that anyone suffering a traumatic amputation or crush injury receive emergency care as soon as possible. The more that can be preserved of the affected limb or appendage, the better. For example, whether a leg is amputated below the knee instead of above the knee can make a world of difference when it comes to using prosthetic legs.

Surgeons work to clean and remove limbs. If possible, they will try to reattach part of the limb. In some cases, transplant surgeries may be considered. Surgeons and healthcare staff need to be especially concerned about infections or the possibility of gangrene.

An important goal of initial amputation treatment is to help the personal injury victim gain as much function as possible. According to the prestigious Johns Hopkins University, some of the factors surgeons review are which body part is involved and the extent of any bone or tissue damage. For example, “To remove a finger, toe, foot, hand, arm or leg, the surgeon may cut through the bone or detach (disarticulate) a joint, separating bones where they meet such as in the knee or elbow.” The amputation may require several stages. Revision surgeries may be required.

Amputation procedures include:

  • Standard amputation. “The surgeons remove the limb, and anchor muscles to the cut end of the bone and cover it with skin.”
  • Osseointegration (OI). Here, surgeons “remove a body part and insert a steel implant into the stump of the leftover bone.” This way a prosthetic can attach to that implanted piece of steel.

What healthcare providers participate in the recovery process?

The post-amputation stump needs to be clean, dry, and bandaged – until the stitches can be removed. Your doctor may use a “compression device” to prevent the stump from swelling and help the stump be ready for a prosthesis.

The amputation rehabilitation process involves working with a team of healthcare providers including:

  • A physical medicine and rehabilitation doctor. This physician works to restore an accident victim’s functional abilities. He/she creates a specific unique treatment plan for the patient.
  • A physical therapist. This healthcare provider works to improve the victims’ muscle strength, flexibility, and coordination. He/she also educates the victim on how to use a prosthesis if one is recommended.
  • A prosthetist, or orthotic expert. This is the professional who designs a customized prosthesis for the victim.
  • An occupational therapist. This healthcare worker works to improve the patients’ independence and ability to adapt to daily living – with a prosthetic and without.
  • A rehabilitation psychologist. These healthcare professionals help victims with the grief and depression that often accompanies the loss of a limb or appendage. The psychologist will also help if the victims suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Rehabilitation amputation care also includes:

  • Learning to use canes, wheelchairs, and other assistive devices.
  • Managing the victims’ phantom pain (the feeling that the amputated limb is still there).
  • Helping the victim with other mobility and safety issues.

It’s also important that family members be part of the rehabilitation process so they can help their loved one physically and emotionally.

The use of prosthetics after an amputation

Some victims will want to use a prosthetic if possible so they can regain some functional use of their limb. There are many factors that need to be reviewed when using a prosthetic. Standard prosthetic devices consist of a pylon (the inner core of the artificial leg or arm), a socket that attaches to the stump and must be properly fitted, liners to cushion the “interface between the residual limb and the prosthesis, and a suspension system which keeps the prosthetic attached (by using belts, straps, harnesses or suctions).

The liners and other parts of the prosthesis may need to be changed every six months. Part and parcel of an amputation claim is that the damage award should include these changes, replacement prostheses, and better models of prostheses.

Do you have a personal injury attorney near me?

Kansas City Accident Injury Attorneys serves all of Missouri and Kansas and offers multiple locations for your convenience. Our Kansas City office is located at 510 Walnut Street.

Speak with a caring Kansas City amputation lawyer today

At Kansas City Accident Injury Attorneys, our personal injury lawyers represent accident victims who suffer catastrophic injuries. We understand just how difficult living without a limb or appendage is physically and emotionally, at work and at home. We fight to obtain all the compensation you deserve including medical care for the rest of your life, lost income, pain and suffering damages, and compensation for disfigurement. We have the experience and resources to help you obtain justice.

To discuss your personal injury case, call us at 816-471-5111, begin a live chat now, or use our contact form to schedule your free consultation. From our main office in Kansas City, we represent clients across Kansas and Missouri. Our lawyers have locations in Lee’s Summit, St. Joseph, and Parkville, MO, as well as Overland Park and Olathe, KS - available by appointment.

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