A team of researchers compared sitting, standing, and stepping between people with dysvascular lower-limb amputations and people with traumatic lower-limb amputations. The researchers found that participants in both groups had long durations of sitting and accumulated most physical activity in bouts of less than one minute.
The 32 participants’ most recent lower-limb amputation was at least one year earlier, they were ambulating independently with a prosthesis, and they were between 45 and 88 years old. The mean age was 62.6 years, 84 percent were men, and 53 percent had dysvascular amputations.
Sitting, standing, and stepping were measured using accelerometry. Daily sitting, standing, and stepping times were expressed as percentages of waking time. Time spent in bouts of specified durations of sitting (<30, 30–60, 60–90, and > 90 minutes), standing (0–1, 1–5, and > 5 minutes), and stepping (0–1, 1–5, and > 5 minutes) was also calculated.
Participants spent most of the day sitting and stepping. One-quarter of sitting was accumulated in bouts of greater than 90 minutes, and most standing and stepping were accrued in bouts of less than one minute.
The participants with traumatic amputations had a 70 percent proportion of time sitting and a 23 percent proportion of time spent standing. Participants with dysvascular amputations had a 79 percent proportion of sitting and a 15 percent proportion of time standing.
The study’s authors suggested that interventions to minimize sedentary behaviors and increase physical activity are potential strategies for improving poor outcomes of physical therapy after lower-limb amputations.
The study, “Patterns of Sitting, Standing, and Stepping After Lower Limb Amputation,” was published in Physical Therapy.