ORLANDO, Fla. — Researchers found that two microprocessor knees displayed similar performance during functionality and safety tests, however, the cost-effectiveness of one requires more research.

“It is not about high processing speed and more sensors,” Jason Highsmith, PhD, DPT, CP, FAAOP and Jason Kahle, MSMS, CPO, FAAOP from the University of South Florida School of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Sciences, said at the O&P World Congress, here. “The real thing is do those matter functionally?”


Jason Highsmith

The study included 20 transfemoral amputees who had been wearing the C-Leg (Ottobock, Minneapolis, Minn.) for at least 1 year and five non-amputee controls. Each participant performed a series of tests to examine function and safety while wearing the C-Leg and the Genium Knee (Ottobock, Minneapolis, Minn.), including the distance walking tests, amputee mobility predictor, 2-minute ramp decline stand, PEQ-A, postural sway stability test and four-square step test. The participants also performed overground walking tests at three different speeds.

Highsmith and Kahle found that both the C-Leg and Genium Knee were safe and represent good options for community-ambulating transfemoral amputees. They found slight improvements in standing downhill, short-to-mid distance straight walking ahead and functional level and general mobility when amputees wore the Genium Knee. However, the researchers said the reimbursement value for the Genium Knee has yet to be seen and requires more research.

“Right now we have the values, but it is going to depend on society’s view of that to say if it is cost-effective, and that is one of the things we are still working on,” Highsmith said.

For more information:

Highsmith J. Symposium: Microprocessor knee clinical trial. Presented at: O&P World Congress. Sept. 18-21, 2013. Orlando, Fla.

Disclosures: Highsmith and Kahle have no relevant financial disclosures.

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