Journal of Rehabilitation Research & Development (JRRD)

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Effects of prosthetic foot forefoot flexibility on oxygen cost and subjective preference rankings of unilateral transtibial prosthesis users

Elizabeth Klodd, MS, et al.

Figure 1. Five experimental prosthetic feet used in study, shown top to bottom in order of decreasing flexibility. (F1 is most flexible and F5 is least flexible.) Flexibility was achieved with flexural hinges in forefoot regions of feet. Increasing number of hinges in series created more flexible prosthetic feet. Drawings on right illustrate maximum deflec-tions allowed by flexural hinges of each foot.

Little is known about the functional characteristics of prosthetic feet and their effects on gait. This study examined the effects of prosthetic foot forefoot flexibility on the amount of oxygen needed to walk a given distance (oxygen cost) and the preference for these systems by persons with unilateral transtibial amputations. The flexibility of the forefoot did not significantly affect the oxygen cost during walking on a treadmill at self-selected speeds. However, prosthesis users tended to dislike prosthetic feet with an overly flexible forefoot in favor of those that more closely matched the biological system's flexibility during walking.

Volume 47 Number 6, 2010
   Pages 543 — 552


This article and any supplementary material should be cited as follows:
Klodd E, Hansen A, Fatone S, Edwards M. Effects of prosthetic foot forefoot flexibility on oxygen cost and subjective preference rankings of unilateral transtibial prosthesis users. J Rehabil Res Dev. 2010;47(6):543-52.
DOI:10.1682/JRRD.2010.01.0003


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Last Reviewed or Updated  Thursday, August 26, 2010 9:19 AM

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