AMPUTATION - TPD SUPER CLAIMS - DISABILITY COMPENSATION SOLICITORSLAWYER HELPLINE: ☎ 1800 339 958
If you are unable to work because of an amputation you may be able to make a TPD claim for a lump sum from the Total & Permanent Disablement insurance contained within your superannuation fund. There is no necessity for you to have been involved in an accident or to have suffered a work related injury to make a TPD claim. If you suffer from total and permanent disability, you may be able to make a TPD claim in addition to receiving your super early as a result of your condition. Our solicitors can advise you in detail as to the requirements of a successful submission, they will prepare all relevant paperwork and will obtain full supporting documentation. Our lawyers will give you free advice on the likely success of your claim to a super fund, without further obligation. It costs nothing to use our free advice service.
An amputation is an acquired loss of part or all of a limb. It can be due to disease, injury or surgery, although people can be born congenitally with all or part of a limb missing. A total of 82 percent of amputations are a result of vascular disease, 22 percent are due to trauma to the body, 4 percent are due to tumours and 4 percent are considered congenital. Around 100,000 individuals have some type of amputation in Australia and over 5,000 amputations happen each year due to various causes.
The causes of an amputation are commonly vascular disease in which cholesterol plaques have narrowed the blood vessels supplying the legs so that they become gangrenous if they are not removed. Diabetes, peripheral vascular disease, or blood clots are all related to getting amputations. Some people get amputations if they have serious osteomyelitis of the bone, which is an infection of the bony tissue. Surgery can be a cause of an amputation. Surgery is usually done to remove bony or muscular tumors/cancers from the body if chemotherapy or excision doesn’t work to remove the cancer. Surgery may need to be done to remove a severely frostbite injury. Amputations are common in the arms but can be due to crush injuries of the legs due to motor vehicle accidents or other types of injuries. A total of 75 percent of upper extremity amputations are due to some form of trauma to the upper extremities.
Symptoms of amputation include pain that is not related to anything real, called phantom pain. There can also be stump pain and limitations of the ability to get around or do things due to loss of the extremity. The stump is usually smooth and healed over but can be granulating or infected, depending on how well it is healing over. There can be fever if the amputation is not healed over properly.
The treatment of amputation is rehabilitation. This is a permanent disability that can impact a person’s ability to get around and rehabilitation is done in the acute phase of the injury as well as in the chronic phase of the injury. Rehabilitation improves function and can help a person with a prosthesis, if indicated or desired.
The success of a rehabilitation program depends on the following things: the level of amputation and type of amputation; the degree of any kind of resulting disabilities and impairments; the overall health of the individual; the family support the individual receives.
The focus of rehabilitation is maximizing the patient’s ability to function at home and within the community. If they receive a great deal of positive reinforcement, they do better. If there is active involvement of both the patient and the family, the person stands a greater chance of success in surviving an amputation. The goal of rehab is to help the patient attain the highest level of functioning and independence. There needs to be an increase in the physical, social, and emotional quality of life.
Rehabilitation includes the various treatments that improve the stump care and wound healing without putting undue pressure on the wound too early. There are motor function activities that keep the limb mobile and strong, even before a prosthesis can be attached. Occupational therapy helps with activities of daily living so the person can be as independent as possible. Physical exercises are done to improve muscle strength, muscle control and physical endurance. Prostheses are attached and practised with so as to improve function. Pain management is addressed, including phantom pain and real pain. There is emotional support that addresses the depression and sense of loss that happens with an amputation.
Assistive devices are used to help the patient get around. Even nutrition is addressed so as to maximize the ability of the wound to heal and remain healed. Vocational counselling is performed to keep the individual employed if at all possible. The home needs to be adapted to the amputation so that everything is safe and functional. The family needs to be educated as to what the patient can and cannot do as well as learning how to help the patient attach the prosthesis.
There are several types of rehabilitation programs for amputees. These include an acute rehabilitation, which occurs right after the surgery, outpatient rehabilitation for increasing function and strength, day treatment programs, which are intensive amputation programs and vocational rehabilitation programs, which address what the patient can learn to do in spite of the amputation.LAWYER HELPLINE: ☎ 1800 339 958