Not only did you sustain serious injuries in a car crash, but you may also need to lose a limb to make a full recovery. What should you expect from the procedure?
WebMD explains how medical professionals perform amputations. Learn what to expect, so you have all the facts on strengthening your case against the at-fault entity or individual.
Before the surgery
Before your procedure, you may need to plan to stay in the hospital for between five and 14 days, but that depends on the surgery and whether you experience complications. The procedure itself depends on your health and the body part health care professionals must operate on. You and your doctor may discuss whether you receive spinal anesthesia that affects you from the waist down or general anesthesia, which puts you to sleep.
Doctors use several methods to determine how much tissue to get rid of and where to perform the operation. For instance, they may compare skin temperatures of your healthy and affected limbs, test for a pulse near the potential surgical site or check for areas of reddened skin.
During the surgery
During the amputation, doctors cut away damaged bone and diseased tissue, refine uneven bone and seal off nerves and blood vessels. Your medical team also molds your muscles to make them ready for an artificial limb.
After the surgery
After the surgery, medical professionals monitor your condition and change your dressings. You may take medication to protect you from infection and address your pain. Let your doctor know if you experience grief over losing your limb or experience phantom pain, as you may require counseling.
You could have a hard time coping with losing a limb. Knowing what to expect could make your road to recovery easier.