A Pilot Investigation of the Effect of Postural Control Strategies and Balance in Children with Unilateral Lower-Limb Amputation

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Abstract

Introduction

Previous research has addressed the effects of backpack loads on balance in adults and children, but there is a gap in the literature concerning children with lower-limb amputation. The purpose of this study was to assess the effect of backpack loads on postural sway in children with lower-limb amputation.

Materials and Methods

Four children with unilateral Syme amputation and five controls were assessed in quiet standing with backpacks loaded with 0%, 10%, 20%, and 25% of body weight. Kinetic data were collected using force platforms, and the path of the center of pressure was calculated.

Results

Considering the sway parameters, the control group showed the expected increase with each successive weight level, whereas the group of children with amputation showed an unexpected nonlinear response as weight increased.

Conclusions

Postural control mechanisms used by the children with amputation may be different from their able-bodied counterparts.

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