Prosthetic rehabilitation of the upper limb amputee
31 December 2019 (online)
The loss of all or part of the arm is a catastrophic event for a patient and a significant challenge to rehabilitation professionals and prosthetic engineers. The large, upper extremity amputee population in India has, historically, been poorly served, with most having no access to support or being provided with ineffective prostheses. In recent years, the arrival of organisations like Otto Bock has made high quality service standards and devices accessible to more amputees. This review attempts to provide surgeons and other medical professionals with an overview of the multidisciplinary, multistage rehabilitation process and the solution options available. With worldwide upper extremity prosthesis rejection rates at significant levels, the review also describes some of the factors which influence the outcome. This is particularly relevant in the Indian context where the service can involve high cost investments. It is the responsibility of all contributing professionals to guide vulnerable patients through the process and try to maximise the benefit that can be obtained within the resources available.
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