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What do I need to know about workplace accident amputation?

What is the most life-changing workplace injury that you can imagine? If you said death or paralysis, you are probably in good company, but amputation also ranks pretty high on the list. A workplace accident that leads to the amputation of even a finger can cause significant long-term problems for workers, depending on the nature of their jobs in New Jersey. Today, we talk about the types of amputations and their potential to lead to major medical expenses or permanent disability.

What causes amputation? The most common causes of amputation are industrial or agricultural. Power-tool accidents at home are also the culprit. Factory accidents are particularly common, largely because workers' body parts can be sucked into machines if those moving parts are not adequately guarded.

Are there different types of amputation? Yes, workers can receive compensation for a variety of amputation events. Complete amputation occurs when the body part is completely severed. In some instances, the part can be reattached, particularly if medical professionals properly care for the severed body part and injury site. Partial amputation occurs when some soft-tissue connection remains at the site. This can complicate potential reattachment, which means that the person may lose the body part entirely.

Can I die from losing a body part in a workplace accident? Sadly, this is a large risk with this type of wound. Your coworkers or trained first responders are the first line of defense in protecting your health and welfare after an amputation event, so they should know how to treat the basic signs of shock and heavy bleeding. Experts report that the long-term outcomes for amputation victims depend upon the timely provision of early care and the correct medical choices throughout the critical stages of the injury.

What should I do if I have suffered an amputation event at work? Your New Jersey employer has a responsibility to keep you safe on the job site. Whether you were injured by a manufacturing process or a forklift -- or something in between -- you deserve to have compensation for your medical costs, lost wages and pain and suffering. If your employer is hesitant to pay up, your legal team can provide critical support.

Source: U.S. National Library of Medicine, "Amputation - traumatic," accessed Sep. 24, 2015

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