This self-directed learning module highlights new advances in this topic area. It is part of the chapter on rehabilitation in limb deficiency in the Self-Directed Physiatric Education Program for practitioners and trainees in physical medicine and rehabilitation. This article discusses normal gait, the influence of prosthetic alignment on amputee function, and the effects of prosthetic components on the metabolic costs and the biomechanical function of the amputee. The biomechanics of normal ambulation are presented as a background to enable the practitioner to gain an understanding of the typical gait adaptations that occur in below-knee and above-knee amputees. The effects of newer prosthetic components and socket designs on the biomechanical adaptations are reviewed. The metabolic costs of amputee ambulation are significantly greater than normal. The theoretical mechanisms for this are discussed, and the effects of newer socket designs, ultra-light-weight components, and energy-storing prosthetic components are presented.

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On a scale of 1 to 10, rate how much this article will change your clinical practice?

NO change
BIG change
37% Article relates to my practice (3/8)
37% Article does not relate to my practice (3/8)
25% Undecided (2/8)

Will this article lead to more cost-effective healthcare?

62% Yes (5/8)
37% No (3/8)
0% Undecided (0/8)

Was this article biased? (commercial or personal)

0% Yes (0/8)
100% No (8/8)
0% Undecided (0/8)

What level of evidence do you think this article is?

0% Level 1 (0/8)
0% Level 2 (0/8)
37% Level 3 (3/8)
50% Level 4 (4/8)
12% Level 5 (1/8)