Date of Award
Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT)
Background and Purpose: There has been an increase in amputations since the start of the Iraq/Afghanistan war, but thousands of Americans have a limb amputated each year due to peripheral vascular disease, diabetes, or infections. New technology in the field of prosthetics, especially prosthetic knees, has helped improve these individuals’ function. The most recent advancement in prosthetic knees is the C-leg, a micro-processor-controlled knee; however, a wide variety of prosthetic knees are available. Therefore, it is critical to select the right prosthetic knee to meet each individual’s needs and goals.
Case Description: The patient was a 58-year-old gentleman who underwent surgery to amputate his leg above the knee due to vascular deficiency and the development of reperfusion and compartment syndrome in his leg.
Intervention: He underwent six weeks of preprosthetic training before he was fitted for prosthesis. He underwent two weeks of prosthetic training rehabilitation to improve prosthetic care, wear time, balance activities, and ambulatory skills.
Outcomes: He increased his wear time to 12 hours, improved his balance, extended his ambulatory capability to 500+ ft using a front-wheeled walker and negotiated 20 stairs using a handrail and crutch.
Discussion: Initially it was thought the C-leg may benefit this individual, but following his six-month reevaluation this was not the case due to a decreased activity level and also due to reduced vii sensation of the sound limb. There is a general lack of research studies to show the benefits of C-legs in older individuals.
Beck, Jonathan, "PROSTHETIC TRAINING FOLLOWING A TRANSFEMORAL AMPUTATION: A CASE REPORT" (2011). Physical Therapy Scholarly Projects. 617.