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    Beyond function: using assistive technologies following lower limb loss


    Dunne, Simon and Coffey, Laura and Gallagher, Pamela and Desmond, Deirdre and Ryall, Nicola (2015) Beyond function: using assistive technologies following lower limb loss. Journal of Rehabilitation Medicine, 47. pp. 561-568. ISSN 1650-1977

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    Abstract

    Objective: To explore how individuals experience and perceive the use of assistive technologies following lower limb loss. Design: Cross-sectional qualitative interview design. Patients: Thirty individuals with lower limb amputation were recruited from a multi-disciplinary rehabilitation programme (26 males and 4 females); comprising individuals with above-knee (n = 16), below-knee (n = 12) and bilateral (n = 2) amputations. Patients were at least 15 months postrehabilitation, at least 18 years old and spoke English. Methods: Semi-structured interviews were conducted via telephone or in person. Interview data were inductively thematically analysed by a researcher who had no previous contact with participants. Results: Three key themes were identified: “It didn’t feel part of me” – Heightened awareness and experiences of distance from prostheses following lower limb loss; “Depending on others is really tough” – Independence through assistive technologies; and “I feel confident with this leg” – The value of prosthesis use following amputation. Conclusion: The findings demonstrate that individuals with lower limb loss perceive and experience assistive technologies to have uses in ways beyond their potential for functional restoration. They may also attribute meanings and values relating to such technologies that may influence their use. Ascertaining and being aware of individuals’ experiences and perceptions of assistive technologies is important for lower limb loss rehabilitation.

    Item Type: Article
    Additional Information: This is the post print version of the published article. The definitive version of this article is available at DOI: 10.2340/16501977-1962
    Keywords: lower limb; amputation; assistive technology; qualitative; independence; embodiment;
    Academic Unit: Faculty of Science and Engineering > Psychology
    Item ID: 6164
    Identification Number: https://doi.org/10.2340/16501977-1962
    Depositing User: Dr. Deirdre Desmond
    Date Deposited: 29 May 2015 15:15
    Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Rehabilitation Medicine
    Publisher: Foundation for Rehabilitation Medicine
    Refereed: Yes
    URI:

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