How Are Injuries of the Knee and Leg Treated Post Accident?
While considered a non life-threatening injury, knee and leg injuries are some of the most painful a victim involved in an accident can sustain. Knee and leg injuries can happen anywhere: work, pedestrian hit-and-run accidents, and falls on improperly maintained sidewalks or on wet floors without proper warning signs. After sustaining an injury to the knee or leg, a victim can find themselves lacking the athleticism and mobility they once had. These are particularly devastating to those who enjoy physical exercise: running, jogging, and playing basketball to name a few.
The immobility knee and leg injuries cause, can reduce a victim’s quality of life. This is true if an accident leaves a victim wheelchair bound or on crutches for a very long time. In catastrophic cases, these injuries can become life threatening if a victim develops CRPS or requires amputation.
Exploring the legal side of knee and leg injury
Within this Shaked Law Resource writeup, we’ll explore the legal and medical side of knee and leg injuries at length. Also, we look at how these injuries can seriously affect both longterm mobility and quality of life. We’ll also provide a clear picture of how the best Personal Injury lawyers handle knee injury claims on behalf of clients. It’s important to understand how this type of accident and the litigation surrounding it affects those sustaining knee and leg injury at no fault of their own.
What is the treatment for knee and leg injuries?
When people sustain injuries to the lower extremities, the first thing they do is seek medical attention. This is especially true if the injury is causing extreme pain. Trouble arises when they find they cannot move the affected limb. Those who sustain injuries during an accident should never put off seeking medical attention. From a legal standpoint, delaying medical care can severely inhibit pursuit of compensation. If a victim waits until the last minute to seek medical attention, they may exceed Florida’s Statute of Limitations.
In more severe cases, the extent of an injury is so bad that a victim may require transport to the ER in an ambulance. This is true in cases where the knee or kneecap becomes broken, shattered, or dislocated. In the most catastrophic cases, injuries may be so severe the limb must be amputated.
What happens after an accident in which one or both the lower extremities become injured?
Following immediate medical attention after an accident, such as relocating a dislocated kneecap or stabilizing fractured bones, there may be more extensive medical attention that need be provided. Mayo Clinic provides extensive information on medical treatment for knee and leg injuries, and we’ve listed some of treatments below as well.
How are knee and leg injuries diagnosed?
- Imaging of the affected limb. an orthopedic surgeon will use MRI or CT scan as a way to closely monitor the injured limb and note any changes to the structure of the knee. Structural changes can range from loss of cartilage to bone loss, depending on the extent of the injury.
- Physical therapy. Physical therapists not only provide rehabilitative care, but they can be invaluable in diagnosing injury. PT is useful to treat the patient’s injury before and after surgery. However, an evaluation by a physical therapist can also assess the extent of an injury. Doctors will use the therapist’s evaluation as insight to further plan a patient’s treatment.
Bracing and stabilization of the joint can provide temporary pain relief while a patient awaits further treatment. while a patient is awaiting surgery, doctors may recommend wearing a brace on the injured knee. This prevents further injury in the meantime.
What treatment is available for knee and leg injury?
- Arthroscopic surgery. This surgical procedure is useful to both diagnose and treat a knee injury in a single surgery. This type of surgical intervention is a first line surgery before a surgeon knows if a Total Knee Replacement will be necessary down the road. During an Arthroscopic knee surgery, a surgeon can visualize the inside of the knee using minimally invasive technology. The recovery for this kind of surgery is usually short. Physical therapy normally follows Arthroscopic surgery.
- Total Knee Replacement. This is the most extreme intervention to treat a patient with a severe knee injury. When less invasive procedures such as Arthroscopy fail to provide the patient with pain relief or the ability to bear weight on the knee, an orthopedic surgeon removes the knee joint and replaces it. This is major surgery with a long recovery time. Physical therapy often follows when the patient receives the “all clear” to bear weight.
What are the surgical complications of knee and leg surgery?
- Excessive bleeding
- Blood clot in the knee or in the leg that could require further invention
- Stiffness of the joint post-op
- Damage to the surrounding structures such as bones or cartilage of the knee
What happens to quality of life post knee or leg injuries?
After a knee or leg injury, victims may be unable to enjoy former athletic hobbies or perform jobs requiring them to be on their feet. The latter problem resulting in lost wages and medical expenses. In accident cases that require major surgery, it can be months or even years before a victim returns to a better quality of life.
How does a Personal Injury lawyer represent a client who suffers knee or leg injuries?
No matter where a person sustains injury, a lawyer with experience is invaluable. In the event a person sustains injuries by the negligence of another, a victim should receive maximum compensation. A Personal Injury lawyer dedicates an entire career to aggressive pursuit of justice on behalf of those looking to recover compensation due to the negligent actions of another. When victims are unable to fight for themselves, it’s the Personal Injury lawyer that ensures their right to damages.
What is legal side of lower extremity injuries?
While those who sustain injuries may feel it insulting that there’s a “price tag” put on their injury, it’s necessary to recover damages. In order to rule on the compensation the victim deserves as a result of their accident, it’s important to consult with a Board Certified lawyer. With changing laws surrounding slip-and-fall cases, only top lawyers have the necessary experience to recover maximum compensation.
How does a victim receive sufficient damages?
To estimate the damages on a knee injury claim, if the case goes to trial, the court will look at several factors:
- Concrete damages. These are damages that are obvious to a judge and jury. These damages can include medical bills and lost wages. The amount of these damages bears concrete proof on paper. Therefore, this compensation is not as difficult to award.
- Subjective damages. Damages that are not easy to identify (medical bills and lost wages have paperwork proof). These damages include “pain and suffering” that the victim experiences post accident. Pain and suffering usually includes: physical pain, mental anguish, and PTSD from trauma.
What about prior injuries?
The judge takes into consideration whether or not the victim had prior injuries affecting the limb. Usually, previous injury would not result in the pain and suffering for which the victim is currently suing. This is something the negligent party’s insurance company will attempt to argue against. Insurance companies use this deceitful tactic to try and convince a victim they should not be receiving any compensation. However, the fact is they are rightfully deserving.
Accident recreation and demonstrative aides are an important part of a successful case. Factor in expert testimony from the doctor treating the patient, as well as a well researched burden of proof, and the client will almost surely walk away with the compensation they rightfully deserve.