Limb Comfort for Amputees | Action Medical Research | Children's Charity | Children's Charity

Artificial limb comfort for below-knee amputees

This research was completed on 30 April 2007

Project LeaderDr B McHugh
LocationNational Centre for Training and Education in Prosthetics and Orthotics and the Department of Mathematics, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow.
Grant awarded10 November 2003
Start date5 April 2004
End date30 April 2007
Grant amount£78,241.00
Grant codeAP0985

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An estimated 600,000 people in Europe have a lower limb amputation as a result of diabetes, cancer, pulmonary and vascular diseases or trauma. Some 70% of these are fitted with an artificial limb (prosthesis) below the knee. It is vital that lower limb amputees receive prosthetic legs which fit the body without causing undue pressure at the socket interface between the body and the prosthesis. A major problem is discomfort at the interface between the artificial limb and the body. Consequently, the prosthesis supplied can have a significant impact on the patient’s quality of life. Unfortunately, there is currently a limited amount of evidence available to clinicians to provide a clear understanding of what makes a good socket fit. This study aims to provide a better understanding of the criteria employed to determine socket fit by examining and comparing the resultant pressures between the body and the device during walking. This in turn should improve artificial limb fitting, comfort and quality of life for below-knee amputees.

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