Functional assessment and satisfaction of transfemoral amputees with low mobility (FASTK2): A clinical trial of microprocessor-controlled vs. non-microprocessor-controlled knees

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The benefits of a microprocessor-controlled knee are well documented in transfemoral amputees who are unlimited community ambulators. There have been suggestions that transfemoral amputees with limited community ambulation will also benefit from a microprocessor-controlled knee. Current medical policy restricts microprocessor-controlled knees to unlimited community ambulators and, thereby, potentially limits function. This clinical trial was performed to determine if limited community ambulators would benefit from a microprocessor-controlled knee.


50 unilateral transfemoral amputees, mean age 69, were tested using their current non-microprocessor-controlled knee, fit with a microprocessor-controlled knee and allowed 10 weeks of acclimation before being tested, and then retested with their original mechanical knee after 4 weeks of re-acclimation. Patient function was assessed in the free-living environment using tri-axial accelerometers. Patient satisfaction and safety were also measured.


The subjects demonstrated improved outcomes when using the microprocessor-controlled knee. Subjects had a significant reduction in falls, spent less time sitting, and increased their activity level. Subjects also reported significantly better ambulation, improved appearance, and greater utility.


This clinical trial demonstrated that transfemoral amputees with limited mobility clearly benefit from a microprocessor-controlled knee. Notably, a reduction in falls occurred while the subjects engaged in more physical activity, which resulted in increased subject satisfaction. The increased activity resulted in a greater exposure to fall risk, but that risk was moderated by the advanced technology.

Interpretation: No: NCT02240186

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