Amputation, what the $$$$


On Vacation!
Jul 6, 2007
Well, I've just got wind that a good mate of mine has had his arm chopped off after an accident on a moto. The thing I feel terrible is I saw him before he went for treatment and although it was a very severe fracture (complete break, above wrist and below elbow) it didn't seem anything a few nuts n bolts wouldn't cure. I have very very limited experience with Dominican medical understanding (a few stitches), but surely they have a good reason for such crudity. I could have done a better job than cutting the thing off.
Can someone tell me exactly why they are not willing to repair before amputate. I'm positive help must be there, just many are not aware of it, yes??


New member
Jun 11, 2007
If the injuries at sinews and muscles are to sever, they are left with no other options than amputate. Particular if there are bleeding inside his arm, then there are a higly risk for tromboses.


Jan 1, 2002
A lot depends on where he was taken for treatment.

Sorry for your mate..

Feb 7, 2007
A lot depends on where he was taken for treatment.

Always carry your insurance card on you, along with your gringo id... so in case of an accident, they know to take you (or transfer) to a good place (they know they will eventually get the money for treatment back)


Sep 17, 2004
Where he was treated may well have made a difference, but not necessarily. Mccoolhill is correct in saying that it is the soft tissue structures that are the issue, not the bones.

Several years ago I had a severe injury to my leg (displaced tibia fracture, bone in 5 pieces and leg sticking sideways at almost a 90% angle just below the knee). I had top notch care in the US. My orthopaedic surgeon told me that bone fragments had missed by a fraction of an inch severing a major artery and nerve, and if that had happened, he would have almost certainly had to amputate. It was necessary to call in a vascular surgeon to consult how to do the operation to insert the plates and screws to put me together without cutting either the artery or the nerve.

My point is not so much that my leg was saved because I had excellent care as it is that I came very close to losing the leg anyway. Sometimes amputation is the only recourse, but there is no doubt that it is done more frequently in places where access to skilled surgeons is limited and decisions of this type are made based on ability to pay.


New member
May 21, 2007
I was told by a Doctor in the Capital that it is extremely common in the DR to amputate damaged limbs. It is cheaper than surgery and rehabilitation.

Unless you have the $$$ and know a Doctor who can advocate for your care, it is the preferred treatment.


Sep 27, 2006
two issues:
1. is there money to try to save hand? if not, amputation usually follows, it is indeed cheaper than operation, medicine etc.
2. is the limb fixable.

having said that - miesposo's cousin had a car accident few months ago, her hand was literally torn off. they took her to a hospital in SD and tried to save the hand but it was too late and the damage was too severe. and she had all the money to pay...
scrubmunches, sorry to hear the story. each time i seat on a bike my imagination runs riot with images of possible damage. i don't know how those people do it every day...
oh yes, close to my house i spotted a dude without a leg driving a pasola. i was almost thinking wow, what a hero when he stopped by a colmado, bought presidente and drove off drinking straight from the bottle....


New member
Dec 19, 2007
I have seen missing limbs there for years and knew it must be the money......

I slipped getting out of the shower in a cabana, about 4 yrs ago in POP ........

When taken to the hospital, my Blue Cross, not recognized and they would not take x-rays until I provided the cash money for the x-rays, which were given to me after I got 12 stitches in the back of my head.........

They did an excellent job and it cost a total of $ 120.00------US, not $ 1200.00 US
Thank goodness I had friends and family, from the US with me .....
I don't know or think my Dominican friends could have helped me.........
Not trying to put anyone down, just trying to be real ...........

Without the x-rays, it probably would have cost me around $50.00 or less .......

So money on the spot or the right medical ins., probably makes the world of difference.........

And it was nice that that Doctor mentioned in the previous post was truthfull ........

And It's good for people visiting the Island to know this ...........
Last edited:
May 31, 2005
I am the Manager of a Free Zone business in Haina. In the 5 years that I've been there, I've lost count of the accidents I've seen in that area.

But I can tell you, I've seen the "tractor trailer run over the head" type of accidents on the average of every 6 months.

I have personally witnessed more than a dozen accidents.

Cool. Most of my family lives there. In Gringo.