Lower Limb Kinematic and Kinetic Differences between Transtibial Amputee Fallers and Non-Fallers

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Vanicek, Natalie, Strike, Catherine Siobhan, McNaughton, Lars and Polman, Remco (2010) Lower Limb Kinematic and Kinetic Differences between Transtibial Amputee Fallers and Non-Fallers. Prosthetics and Orthotics International, 34 (4). pp. 399-410. ISSN 0309-3646


Stair walking relies on concentric contraction of the ankle plantarflexor and knee extensor muscles, which are either absent or weakened in transtibial amputees. As a result the risk of falling is increased in this population. The aim of this study was to compare the gait patterns of transtibial amputee fallers and non-fallers during stair ascent. Eleven participants (fallers = 6; non-fallers = 5) walked along a 3-m walkway and ascended a three-step staircase with handrails, at their self-selected pace, while three-dimensional kinematic data were collected from the lower limbs. A force plate was embedded into the first step and kinetic data were measured for the intact lead limb only. The fallers walked significantly faster (p = 0.00) and exhibited less hip flexion (p = 0.05) and less anterior pelvic tilt (p = 0.04) compared to the non-fallers. The fallers had significantly greater first and second peak vertical ground reaction force (GRF) on the intact limb than the non-fallers (p = 0.05 and p = 0.01, respectively) contributing to the significantly larger ankle (p = 0.02) and hip moments (p = 0.04). These findings suggested the amputee non-fallers performed mechanically demanding tasks more cautiously. Two of the participants self-selected a ‘step to’ gait pattem, ascending one step at a time. This may be considered a compensatory mechanism for the lack of ankle mobility and functional muscle performance in these two transtibial amputees.

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Item type Article
URI https://vuir.vu.edu.au/id/eprint/7020
DOI 10.3109/03093646.2010.480964
Official URL http://poi.sagepub.com/content/34/4/399.full.pdf
Subjects Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > Institute of Sport, Exercise and Active Living (ISEAL)
Historical > FOR Classification > 1103 Clinical Sciences
Historical > SEO Classification > 970111 Expanding Knowledge in the Medical and Health Sciences
Keywords ResPubID21074, gait, stairs, transtibial amputee, falls, biomechanics
Citations in Scopus 20 - View on Scopus
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