As the population grows older and the burden of chronic disease increases, it is like that many individuals will undergo major lower limb amputation (LLA) at advanced ages. While there is a scarcity of literature focusing on the outcomes of rehabilitation for people who acquire LLA at 80 years of age and older, researchers aimed to determine the scope of empirical evidence regarding their prosthetic rehabilitation.
The databases CINAHL, EMBASE, MEDLINE, and Scopus were searched from inception through June 6, 2020 (PROSPERO: #CRD 42020188623). Two authors independently reviewed all titles and abstracts for inclusion. Inclusion criteria, LLA of any etiology at the transtibial level or above, those who were 80 and older at the time of amputation and had rehabilitation outcomes reported.
Results showed that of 11,738 articles identified from databases, 117 underwent full-text review and ten met inclusion criteria. Multiple rehabilitation outcomes were assessed by the selected studies, including general outcomes, prosthetic-related outcomes, and functional abilities. Individuals 80-and 80-plus years of age were able to successfully use a prosthesis, discharged home, and performed activities independently or with support, the study found. However, increased age was negatively associated with prosthesis fitting and rehabilitation success was not uniform in some participants.
Researchers determined that the oldest old with major LLA can be successful in prosthetic rehabilitation and that age on its own should not disqualify individuals from assessment or participation in a rehabilitation program for those with amputations.
The study “Rehabilitation Outcomes After Major Limb Amputations in the Oldest Old: A Systematic Review” was published in the journal Prosthetics & Orthotics International.