Pittsburgh Traumatic Amputation Lawyers
Strong advocacy when an accident causes a loss of limb
Some Pittsburgh accidents are so violent that a victim’s arm, leg, hand, or foot is completely torn from the joint socket or separated from the bones. Some partial tears and separations require amputations in order to save the life of a victim. Surgeons do their best to keep enough of your limb so that you can use a prosthesis. Managing the physical damage is just the first trauma. Most victims require psychological help to cope with their disfigurement.
At Carmody and Ging, our Pittsburgh traumatic amputation lawyers begin your claim by determining how the accident that caused the amputation happened and who is responsible. We work with your medical team and our network of specialists to understand how severe your amputation injury is, what complications may arise, how your amputation is affecting every aspect of your life, and the medical costs to help you through surgery and therapies. Our lawyers have secured substantial personal injury verdicts and settlements for our clients – many for six and seven figures.
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What would you like to know?
- What is a traumatic amputation?
- Why do amputation injuries happen in Pittsburgh?
- What treatments for a loss of limb injury are available in Pittsburgh?
- How does a prosthesis help an amputee?
- What is phantom pain?
- What type of help is available near Pittsburgh for amputees?
- How much is my Pittsburgh traumatic amputation claim worth?
- Do you have a traumatic amputation lawyer near me?
What is a traumatic amputation?
Victims of accidents may require amputation which is surgery that removes part or all of a limb. The Cleveland Clinic states that your surgeon will remove the damaged tissue. When they amputate, the surgeons try to save as much of the limb as possible so you can be fitted with a prosthesis. During the operation, your surgeon will also remove any crushed bone, smooth any uneven bone, seal the blood vessels to prevent bleeding, shape the muscles to be fitted with a prosthetic limb, and place a sterile dressing over the wound. Your surgeon may close the wound immediately or wait a few days to allow the wound to heal.
You will likely stay in the hospital for a few days or a week or two. You should start working with a physical therapist within a few days after the surgery. As soon as possible, you’ll start going to a rehabilitation center.
Why do amputation injuries happen in Pittsburgh?
Traumatic amputations are caused by extreme force. The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) states that traumatic amputations (amputations due to accidents, not disease) are caused by:
- Motor vehicle accidents – including car accidents, truck accidents, motorcycle accidents, bus accidents, and Uber and Lyft accidents
- Falls – including falls from heights, such as scaffolds and ladders
- Drowning-related injuries
- Fires and burn injuries
- Other physical assaults, including gunshots and stabbings
Additional causes include:
- Pedestrian accidents
- Bicycle accidents
- Work zone accidents
- Construction accidents
- Defective products that explode or cause electrical injuries
- Oilfield and gas accidents
- Crushing injuries
Medical malpractice may also result in amputation, such as if a doctor fails to treat diabetes correctly. At Carmody and Ging, we work with investigators and other professionals in conducting extensive discovery to help hold the wrongdoers accountable.
What treatments for a loss of limb injury are available in Pittsburgh?
UPMC, like other medical centers that specialize in amputation care, involves many different people in your recovery process:
- Physical therapists. These healthcare professionals focus on:
- Helping you learn to use any prosthetic device and exercises to strengthen your muscles and help with your mobility.
- Wearing and caring for your prosthesis. Your physical therapist (PT) teaches you how to put the prosthesis on and take it off, care for the prosthesis and stump, hygiene, and the time you use of your prosthesis during your rehabilitation.
- Developing therapeutic exercises. Your PT will develop an “exercise program to stretch and strengthen the muscles around your hip, knee, back, and trunk,” help you improve your balance while standing and walking, and handle weight-bearing issues.
- Skin care and edema healthcare professionals. These providers inspect your skin after your surgery and during the beginning of your prosthetic care. UPMC notes that “Scar mobilization can keep the skin flexible and pliable and make your prosthesis easier to wear.” Edema care focuses on issues including swelling when you’re not wearing your prosthesis.
- Occupational therapists (OTs). These healthcare providers focus on self-care and daily living needs and activities including bathing, dressing, getting into and out of a bathtub, household chores, and other activities. Your OT may also help you with different types of assistive devices.
- Mobility and environmental training. These professionals help Pittsburgh amputees learn how to navigate curbs, stairs, ramps, and uneven surfaces. They’ll also help you with changes to your bathrooms, appliances, clothing, home, workplace, and car so you can function better.
Your rehabilitation team also helps amputees follow up with prosthetic companies to change or upgrade your prosthesis, manage phantom pain, and outpatient care.
How does a prosthesis help an amputee?
Most amputees who can wear a prosthesis do so, though it’s not required. Our Pittsburgh amputation lawyers work with your medical team to ensure you obtain the best prosthetic devices and the best upgrades – for the rest of your life.
A prosthesis for an arm or leg must be designed and fitted properly so that it fits over the stump, is comfortable to use, and helps you regain as much functional use of your limb as possible – so you can walk, stand, lift, carry items, and do as much as you could before the accident happened.
New technologies can even help your prosthesis communicate with your brain through microprocessors and other technologies.
What is phantom pain?
One of the main complications of an amputation is phantom pain. The Mayo Clinic states that phantom pain is pain that feels like it's coming from a body part that's no longer there. Physicians now believe that phantom pain originates in the spinal cord and the brain. If the phantom pain doesn’t improve on its own, there are medications and therapies that may help.
Possible treatments include the use of a mirror box, acupuncture, repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS), spinal cord stimulation, and therapy.
What type of help is available near Pittsburgh for amputees?
Most amputees need psychological and emotional help to learn to live with the loss of all or part of a body part. Our lawyers work with professionals such as psychologists who are trained to help amputees. There are also amputee support groups in and around Pittsburgh that can help, including:
How much is my Pittsburgh traumatic amputation claim worth?
At Carmody and Ging, we understand just how life-changing amputation injuries are. We work with your doctors and our own network of doctors to fully understand all the ways your life is more difficult because of your limb loss. We also work with your employers, your family, and you to show the severity and scope of your damages. Our Pittsburgh amputation injury lawyers seek compensation for all your current and future damages including:
- Medical bills – ER care, surgeries, rehabilitative care, prostheses, medications, and other healthcare costs
- Income loss – including compensation if you can’t work again
- Pain and suffering – all your phantom and real pain, your emotional trauma, and your loss of life’s pleasures
- Scarring and disfigurement damages
- Property damages – such as damage to a car
- Loss of consortium (marital enjoyment)
It’s best to contact our lawyers as soon as possible. While you generally have two years to file your claim, some legal exceptions may apply. Practically, we need to investigate the cause of your accident and address your health as quickly as possible.
Do you have a traumatic amputation lawyer near me?
Carmody and Ging is located at 801 Vinial Street in Pittsburgh, on the 3rd floor of the Deutschtown Center building. We’re easy to find. We’re right across the street from Penn Brewery. There’s parking onsite. You can also travel to our office by bus. Just get off at the Troy Hill Road stop. We’re around the corner. We also conduct video conferences and can make arrangements to see clients in ill health away from the office.
We understand how difficult it can be to cope with the loss of a limb. We’ll answer all your questions, explain your rights, and guide you calmly and clearly through the claims process.
Speak with our experienced Pittsburgh traumatic amputation lawyers
Don’t suffer alone. If a part of your body was amputated due to an accident, the defendants who caused your injuries should be held accountable for all your financial and personal damages. Our Pittsburgh loss of limb attorneys have been fighting for personal injury victims for 30 years. Carmody and Ging is ready to help you now. To schedule a free consultation with a respected Pittsburgh personal injury lawyer, please call 412.281.2929 or fill out our contact form. We’ll help you move forward.