Evaluation of Use of Prosthesis, Mobility, and Quality of Life in Young and Adult Persons with Unilateral Above-Knee Amputation 7 Years after the 2008 Sichuan Earthquake

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Abstract

Background

The 2008 Sichuan earthquake resulted in many casualties, also leaving a great number of persons with amputation who require long-term rehabilitation.

Objectives

This study aims to evaluate the use of prostheses, mobility, and quality of life and to determine factors associated with better rehabilitation outcomes 7 years after the earthquake for individuals from the StandTall rehabilitation program with traumatic unilateral above-knee amputation due to earthquake injuries.

Method

This is a cross-sectional study. Twenty-four individuals with unilateral above-knee amputation were recruited either at home visits or during clinic sessions between December 2014 and May 2015. Main outcome measures were 12-Item Short Form Survey Version 2, Amputee Mobility Predictor, Houghton Scale, and Trinity Amputation and Prosthesis Experience Scales.

Results

Adults with unilateral above-knee amputation experienced worse psychological adjustment to limitation (p = 0.018), more social activity restrictions (p = 0.072), and suffered from more residual limb pain (p = 0.024), and phantom pain (p = 0.044). Rehabilitation success was associated with less athletic restriction (p = 0.053), less functional restriction (p = 0.077), and greater prosthetic satisfaction (p = 0.085).

Conclusions

Adults with unilateral above-knee amputation experienced greater difficulties in psychological adjustment to limitation and social activities, even 7 years after the amputation. Residual limb and phantom pain were greatly affected by age. Prosthetic daily wearing time correlated with better functional outcome for individuals with unilateral transfemoral amputation. This study provides information regarding long-term rehabilitation outcomes of individuals with traumatic unilateral above-knee amputation. Age, daily prosthetic wearing time, and residual limb pain and phantom pain are main factors affecting rehabilitation outcomes of individuals with amputation. Physical quality of life and psychosocial quality of life are both impaired by amputation.

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