In 2007, about 1.7 million people in the United States were missing at least one limb. Each year, many people lose limbs to surgical amputation, often as the result of health problems like diabetes. The rate per year for loss of limbs after trauma is around 5.9 per 100,000 persons. The highest prevalence of loss of limbs is in people who are age 65 or older.
How Car Accidents Result in Limb Loss
The loss of a limb is one of the most severe forms of personal injury. Loss of limb occurs when the victim sustains an amputation in the accident, or when doctors are unable to save a serious limb injury during recovery. In some cases, an initial injury will result in amputation to avoid catastrophic blood loss and/or death. This includes severe burns and fractures.
Options After Losing a Limb in an Accident
Medical treatment is limited after an amputation. While pioneering surgical procedures, such as hand transplants, have been performed, they are far from standard. Thus, many people who lose a limb simply live without it. Prosthetic limbs are an option for some, but must be custom-made for each individual and require a significant period of adjustment.
When are vehicle operators liable?
In some car accidents, there is a party that can be held liable for compensating an injured person. Liability can result from:
- A driver driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Speeding or other reckless vehicle operation
- A driver failing to observe traffic lights or signs
- Drivers operating a vehicle while distracted (by talking on a phone, for example)
- A driver falling asleep behind the wheel
After a personal injury, it is important for medical attention to be summoned, and for police to be called so that the details of the accident can be documented as completely as possible.
How Our Fort Lauderdale Car Accident Lawyers Can Help
Losing a limb can completely change how a person lives their life. If you or someone you love loses a limb in an accident, the next order of business after obtaining medical treatment is to speak with a personal injury attorney. Skilled, experienced attorneys, like the ones at Kelley/Uustal, know how to deal with insurance companies and how to use the court system if necessary so that victims can be fairly compensated after suffering from the loss of a limb.