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Ind Psychiatry J. 2018 Jul-Dec;27(2):240-248. doi: 10.4103/ipj.ipj_69_18.

Evaluation of treatment of psychiatric morbidity among limb amputees.

Author information

1
Department of Psychiatry, Command Hospital (Southern Command) and AFMC, Pune, Maharashtra, India.
2
Department of Psychiatry, Dr. D.Y. Patil Medical College, Hospital and Research Center, Dr. D.Y. Patil Vidyapeeth, Pune, Maharashtra, India.
3
Department of Psychiatry, Military Hospital, Jhansi, Uttar Pradesh, India.

Abstract

Background:

The sudden jolt of becoming an amputee brings with it the realization of loss of independence and self-built psychological and physical security. Advances in the field of prosthesis give the individual hope for better future, but the presence of psychological morbidity is a hurdle to be crossed in the road to satisfactory rehabilitation.

Aim:

This study aimed to assess the psychiatric morbidity in amputees and the response to treatment.

Materials and Methods:

One hundred newly amputated soldiers were assessed by means of clinical interview, General Health Questionnaire, Impact of Event Scale, Hospital Anxiety Depression Scale, McGill Pain Questionnaire, and Dallas Pain Questionnaire. Individuals were treated with appropriate medications and psychotherapy, and response to treatment was assessed.

Results:

Psychiatric disorders were diagnosed in 66% including adjustment disorders (40%), depressive episode (20%), and posttraumatic stress disorder (6%). Phantom sensation and phantom pain were noted in 72% and 64% of participants, respectively. More psychiatric disorders and phantom sensation were found in the early months after amputation. Psychiatric morbidity was associated with negative body image, distressing pain, and restriction of activities of daily life. Treatment produced complete remission of symptoms in 65.15% of individuals suffering from psychiatric disorders and statistically significant reduction in the scores of psychiatric rating scales.

Conclusions:

There is a high prevalence of psychiatric morbidity among amputees. Psychiatric treatment produces significant improvement in the psychological well-being of amputees and underlines the need to focus on the psychological rehabilitations of the amputee apart from physical rehabilitation.

KEYWORDS:

Amputation; management; phantom pain; phantom sensation; psychiatric disorders

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