Prosthetic Facts

An amputation is the surgical removal of an appendage or limb. The majority of amputations occur as a result of disease, with diabetes and cardiovascular disease accounting for the greatest percentage (nearly 75%). Almost 25% of amputations are the result of a traumatic accident.

A prosthesis is a man-made device to replace your amputated limb. It is custom fit to each individual, taking several factors into consideration, such as your health, lifestyle, age and weight.

The name of an amputation is determined by the part of the limb removed. Most types or levels are referred to by letters or abbreviations:

  • AE-above elbow (Trans Humeral)
  • AK - above knee (Trans Femoral)
  • BE - below elbow (Trans Radial)
  • BK - below knee (Trans Tibial)
  • Bi-Lateral - both legs or arms
  • Elbow Disarticulation - arm through elbow
  • Forequarter - (Interscapula Thoracic) - arm, shoulder, clavicle, and scapula
  • Hemipelvectomy - leg, hip and pelvis
  • Hip Disarticulation - leg at hip
  • Knee Disarticulation - leg and knee
  • Mid-Metacarpal - fingers at knuckles
  • Shoulder Disarticulation - arm at shoulder
  • Syme - foot at ankle
  • Transmetatarsal - toes and part of forefoot
  • Wrist Disarticulation - hand at wrist

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