The biomechanical effects of the inclusion of a torque absorber on trans-femoral amputee gait, a pilot study

M L Van der Linden, N Twiste, S V S Rithalia
Prosthetics and Orthotics International 2002, 26 (1): 35-43
This paper reports on a pilot study investigating the effects on the gait of two transfemoral amputees of to the inclusion of a torque absorber (TA) and its location relative to the knee unit. Both subjects carried out gait tests with a prosthesis with no TA with, a TA proximal to the knee unit and with a TA distal to the knee unit. Three-dimensional gait analysis was carried out to establish the kinematic and kinetic gait parameters of both the prosthetic and sound side. It was found that the TA did not significantly affect the sagittal kinetic and kinematic parameters of the sound or the prosthetic side. However, for one subject the axial rotation of the socket relative to the foot was significantly greater with the TA. It was concluded that by using the methodology of this pilot study, it is possible to investigate the rotations in the transverse plane within the prosthetic limb and pelvis. Further, including a TA may reduce the relative motion between the stump and the socket and therefore may decrease skin breakdown due to diminished shear forces.

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