Foot loading characteristics of amputees and normal subjects

The foot loading characteristics of 100 consecutively attending amputees wearing their definitive prostheses were studied during their routine visits to the Artificial Limb and Appliance Centre. Results were compared with observations on 100 age and sex matched controls who were free from any locomotor disability. The parameters measured were the percentage of body weight borne on each foot, the positions of the centres of pressure under each foot and the position of the overall centre of foot pressure. The results demonstrate the range of variability of these parameters in normal subjects of different ages and provide preliminary indications of the patterns associated with different types of prostheses and different levels of amputation. The information was collected using the Double Video Forceplate (DVF) a tool developed for the rapid assessment of stance, at University College London Bioengineering Centre. It is proposed that the DVF may be useful in assisting prosthetic alignment, in clinical teaching of prosthetists, physiotherapists and doctors and in monitoring of patients with lower limb amputation.

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