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Volume 44 Number 4 2007
Pages 483 — 490


Abstract - Expert opinions on success factors for upper-limb prostheses

Aimee E. Schultz, BS;1-2 Susan P. Baade, BA;2 Todd A. Kuiken, MD, PhD2-4*

1Department of Mechanical Engineering, Northwestern University, Evanston, IL; 2Neural Engineering Center for Artificial Limbs, Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago, Chicago IL; 3Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Feinberg School of Medicine and 4Department of Biomedical Engineering, Northwestern University, Chicago, IL

Abstract — The goal of this study was to gather the opinions of prosthetics experts on the most important factors for the successful use of upper-limb (UL) prostheses, compare them with those of prosthesis users, and ultimately direct research efforts in this field. UL prosthetics experts were asked to compare the importance of the comfort, function, and cosmesis of a prosthetic device for a transhumeral amputee. Categories were subdivided into weight, socket-interface comfort, power, agility, color, and shape. The majority of those who responded viewed comfort as the most important factor for a unilateral amputee and considered socket-interface comfort to be more important than weight. Function was considered to be the most important factor for a bilateral amputee, with agility considered more important than power. Cosmesis was consistently reported as being less important than comfort and function, and shape was considered more important than color.

Key words: bilateral amputee, comfort, cosmesis, function, prosthesis, rehabilitation, success factors, survey, transhumeral amputee, unilateral amputee.


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