A Survey of Upper-Limb Prosthesis Users in Oxfordshire

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The design of a new device should embrace the needs of the target population. A survey of prosthetic limb users was performed at the Oxford Limb-Fitting Centre, Headington, Oxford, as part of the specification for an intelligent hand prosthesis. Users of prosthetic limbs were questioned about the positive and negative attributes of their limb and were asked about their wishes for the design of prostheses. A questionnaire was devised to address this and sent to 80 subjects; 69% responded. It was found that light weight, durability, ease of cleaning, longevity of operation (up to 12 hours), and suitability for driving were highlighted as priorities. This information was incorporated into the design of a new powered hand prosthesis. This article reviews the results of the survey and makes comparisons with similar studies. Finally, recommendations are made for the designs of any new prosthesis system.

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