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Prosthet Orthot Int. 2000 Dec;24(3):196-204.

Positive meaning in amputation and thoughts about the amputated limb.

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Department of Psychology, Trinity, College, Dublin, Ireland.


The majority of research conducted on the aftermath of amputation understandably concerns itself with its most distressing aspects. This research aimed to explore whether and how people think about their amputated limb, and whether and if they considered anything good had emerged from their amputation. One hundred and four (104) people completed the Trinity Amputation and Prosthesis Experience Scales (TAPES) and two open-ended questions. The majority of participants were young and had traumatic amputations. Fifty-six percent (56%) of people thought about their amputated limb. People with bilateral or a trans-femoral amputation were more likely to think about their amputated limb than people with a trans-tibial amputation. Forty-eight percent (48%) considered that something good had happened as a result of the amputation. Furthermore, finding positive meaning was significantly associated with more favourable physical capabilities and health ratings, lower levels of Athletic Activity Restriction and higher levels of Adjustment to Limitation. Future research and clinical implications are discussed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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