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What Types of Personal Injury Cases Involve Amputations

Amputation is not a typical topic of conversation. When it is addressed, perhaps the most common portrayal of amputees and their adjustments to life is the war veteran injured in battle who returns home and faces many challenges. From fictional movies, such as Forrest Gump, to commercials supporting brave, injured veterans, we are provided a glimpse of the difficulties amputees face.

While the challenges are real, it is not just war that causes people to lose limbs. In ordinary daily activities, negligent actions can cause harm to others. This blog post will look at some statistics about amputations and discuss some types of personal injury cases that sometimes result in amputation injuries.

Amputation Statistics

Amputation is the removal of a person’s body part. Some people think of the term narrowly, referring only to the loss of an arm or a leg. Others use an expanded definition, including any body part, such as fingers, toes, arms, and legs. Regardless of the definition, the number and types of amputations occurring yearly are probably more significant than you think. 

According to Amputee Coalition, an advocacy organization for amputees, there are approximately 185,000 amputations annually in the United States. The Amputee Coalition further reports that almost 2 million people in the United States have limb loss, and another 28 million people are at risk of having amputation surgery.

Three Common Types of Amputation

The following are three common types of amputation:

  1. Traumatic Amputation – this form of amputation results when a body part is torn away during a traumatic event. Examples include work injuries, car accidents, and burns. According to Johns Hopkins, approximately 45 percent of amputations result from traumatic injuries.
  2. Congenital Amputation – this type of amputation does not refer to a procedure, but rather a body part that is missing or improperly formed at the time of birth.
  3. Surgical Amputation – sometimes, a body part needs to be removed because surgery, medication, or physical therapy cannot repair it or because it is causing danger to the person’s life.

Types of Personal Injury Cases that Can Cause Amputation

Some amputations result from health conditions, such as diabetes and cancer. Amputations can also result from the types of injuries that lead to personal injury cases discussed below.

  • Motor vehicle accidents – we use the term motor vehicle broadly in this instance. Any type of moving vehicle that is involved in an accident can cause horrific injuries. Such accidents could include cars, semi-trucks, motorcycles, snowmobiles, and any other type of motorized vehicle. Moreover, motor vehicles can strike pedestrians and bicyclists and cause severe injury and death.
  • Medical Malpractice – medical malpractice can cause the loss of limbs in several ways. For example, medical personnel may remove the wrong limb. While this is just an example, amputation can result from other forms of negligence. For example, failing to treat a wound according to current standards of care, overlooking the need for treatment, and improper diagnoses can lead to unfortunate results.
  • Work-related injuries – many people work in dangerous jobs that lead to work-related injuries. Depending on the circumstances, these types of damages may give rise to a worker’s compensation claim, but in some instances, may lead to a personal injury claim.

Call with Questions

Fortunately, medical advancements and available resources for amputees aid in recovery from these severe types of injuries. However, the loss is still life-changing and challenging, and you’ll likely be left with questions. The experienced Oregon personal injury lawyers at Nelson MacNeil Rayfield are here to assist you and answer them. We believe that it is imperative to hold wrongdoers accountable for their negligence so that the rest of society will be safer.