Factors Associated with Use and Nonuse of an AK Prosthesis in a Rural, Southern, Geriatric Population

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The purpose of this study was to determine factors associated with nonuse of an AK prosthesis in a rural, Southern, geriatric population. We conducted a telephone survey of AK amputees fitted with a prosthesis in Eastern North Carolina. There was an association between nonuse of the prosthesis and the following factors: African-American race; low education; no gainful employment; copresence of diabetes mellitus and peripheral vascular disease; use of walker, but not cane; and phantom pain of short duration. Recommendations for prosthesis providers include: (a) good management of comorbidities, (b) counseling that prosthetic use minimizes phantom pain, (c) optimization of balance and coordination, and (d) consideration of alternative nonprosthetic options for ambulation.

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