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Keywords:

  • Female;
  • amputation;
  • rehabilitation;
  • patient preference;
  • prostheses and implants

Abstract

Purpose

We present five cases of adult females with major limb amputations, their concerns and preferences for services across the life span.

Design

A convenience sample of five veteran and nonveteran women aged 19–58 with major limb amputations participating in a regional VA Prosthetics Conference in 2010 took part in a panel interview.

Findings

The concerns identified by these women as high priorities included independence and participation in a full range of life activities, limitations in access, patient decision-making and body image concerns, and preferences for selected services. Maximizing function and quality of life for women amputees requires identifying patient preferences for rehabilitation and prosthetic services. Lessons learned could inform development of clinic-based rehabilitation care, prosthetic services, and studies of women with major limb amputations.

Conclusions

As the current conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan wind down, the number of women veterans seeking rehabilitation and prosthetic services will increase. With this information, rehabilitation and prosthetic service providers and organizations will be uniquely positioned to provide prevention and treatment of amputations for this growing population of women veterans in national care delivery systems and in communities.

Clinical Relevance

An open-ended facilitated discussion among a panel of women with major limb amputations provided insights for providers and organizations with respect to needs, concerns, and preferences for rehabilitation and prosthetic services.