Residual limb problems could reduce activities of daily living in amputees

Residual limb problems after traumatic lower limb amputation could critically reduce activities of daily living for amputees, according to research recently published in BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders.

Researchers analyzed a cohort of clinical cases in which amputees had received revision surgery of the residual limb after above-ankle amputation. They also examined surgical management strategies of problems with residual limbs.

Factors including gender, unilateral or bilateral, amputation type and cause of trauma were noted. Excess soft tissue, scar, ulcers, neuromas and bone spurs were taken as dependent variables. The relationship between these factors and residual limb problems was analyzed.

Findings showed that the frequency of excess soft tissue in above knee amputation cases was higher than that in below knee amputation. Bone spur occurred more frequently in the unilateral amputation than in bilateral amputations. There was also a significant difference in the activities of daily living scores between admission and discharge.

Residual limb problems secondary to traumatic lower limb amputation had crucial influence on amputees’ ability to return to living and work. However, appropriate evaluation and timely surgical revision showed beneficial results, the researchers concluded.


Liu K, et al. BMC Musculoskelet Disord. 2015;doi:10.1186/s12891-015-0508-3.

Disclosure: Liu reports no relevant financial disclosures.

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