Wolf, Baldwin & Associates, P.C.

What type of care helps when you suffer an amputation?

One of the most traumatic injuries you can suffer on the job in Pennsylvania is an amputation. Even a partial amputation could mean that the body part has to be removed. You could have to deal with extreme pain and anguish, blood loss, shock, infection and many other complications.

The care you get immediately following the amputation often plays a crucial role in how bad the injury is and whether or not medical professionals can save the body part — sometimes by reattaching it. Therefore, those who are around you are encouraged to:

- Keep you as warm as possible.- Try to slow or stop the bleeding.- Focus on saving your life before saving the amputated body part.- Keep an eye on how well you can breathe.- Do everything possible to calm you down.- Keep the severed body part and the wound very clean.- Keep the body part cold, if possible, by using cold water in a container. Though a common myth says to put the body part right on ice or even dry ice, this should not be done.- Wrap a tourniquet around the injured area.- Contact medical professionals immediately.- Work to prevent you from going into shock.- Help you lie down in a comfortable manner that keeps pressure off of the injury.- Look for any additional injuries, such as more cuts or broken bones in the area.- Remain with you until help arrives.

Even when people do all of this, the results of an amputation can be life-changing, so make sure you know your legal rights to compensation.

Source: U.S. National Library of Medicine, "Amputation - traumatic," accessed Nov. 13, 2015

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