Roughly 1.8 million Americans must daily cope with physical amputation injuries explain the NYC construction accident attorneys at the F&A injury law firm. While some have such operations due to diabetes and other diseases, others incur them while working on construction sites (or getting penned inside vehicles during car accidents). Power press operators and others working with heavy machinery are especially likely to suffer injuries leading to the amputation of a finger, arm or hand.
Many construction site workers also need lower body extremities amputated after falling from great heights or when their personal protection equipment fails to work properly. Being struck by a falling object can also result in the loss of a finger, toe, hand or foot. Workers may even need an amputation after a careless forklift or bulldozer driver fails to see them and accidentally runs over them — or pin parts of their bodies up against nearby objects.
Even after the damaged limb or digit is removed, special care is often required so that the worker can try to resume some type of meaningful work again.
Common Reasons Why Your Serious Injury May Require an Amputation
When a limb or digit has been seriously compromised, poor circulation often develops. This is usually caused when damaged arteries start to narrow (peripheral artery disease). Once any part of the body stops receiving adequate blood flow, the cells will stop receiving all the nutrients and oxygen they require to live and function properly. Once this process begins, the affected tissue may start to die – making it more likely that a dangerous infection may develop.
What to Expect During an Amputation Procedure
You’re likely to be hospitalized for as long as five to 14 days following your amputation due to possible complications. While the operation is being performed, you’re likely to receive either general or spinal anesthesia that will numb your body from the waist down.
Your surgeon’s main goal is to carefully remove all the damaged tissue around the limb or extremity – while leaving behind as much healthy tissue as possible.
Once Your Amputation Procedure Begins
Your surgeon will begin the process by removing all crushed bone in the area and all diseased tissue. One of the last steps will involve cutting and shaping the muscles in the stump area so that some type of prosthesis may be attached in the future.
After your wound is closed, a nurse will apply a sterile dressing to the amputation area. A sterile stocking may then be fitted over the remaining stump to help hold all required bandages and drainage tubes. In some cases, depending on the limb or digit removed, your surgeon may place the remaining limb in traction so that it will be in the best healing position. Otherwise, the stump may be placed in a splint.
Amputation Aftercare is Critical
All wound bandages or dressings must be carefully removed and the areas beneath properly cleansed before new bandages are applied. You’ll be given special pain medications and told what to expect regarding “phantom pain” (possible sensations in the area where the missing body part once existed).
Physical therapy after release from the hospital can help you regain some dexterity with the affected limb. If you’ve lost an entire limb, a prosthetics expert will often help fit you with an artificial limb when your doctor believes you’re ready to start trying to use one.
While the entire surgery and recovery period can be quite difficult, it’s always wise to maintain hope. Be sure to give serious thought to taking part in a hospital (or other local) support group with members who have already worked through the types of adjustments you’re currently facing.
Please contact your NYC construction accident attorney so we can help by possibly filing a lawsuit. We’ll investigate the facts of your case to see if they will support a claim under the New York Labor Law against the owner and or general contractor at the job site. We take pride in negotiating the highest possible settlements and verdicts for all our clients. Our firm always seeks the maximum amount of compensation available for all your pain and suffering, lost earnings, and medical expenses.