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Incidence of Overuse Musculoskeletal Injuries in Military Service Members With Traumatic Lower Limb Amputation

Published:October 31, 2017DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.apmr.2017.10.010

      Abstract

      Objective

      To describe the incidence of overuse musculoskeletal injuries in service members with combat-related lower limb amputation.

      Design

      Retrospective cohort study.

      Setting

      Military treatment facilities.

      Participants

      Service members with deployment-related lower limb injury (N=791): 496 with a major lower limb amputation and 295 with a mild lower limb injury.

      Interventions

      Not applicable.

      Main Outcome Measures

      The outcomes of interest were clinical diagnosis codes (International Classification of Diseases–9th Revision) associated with musculoskeletal overuse injuries of the lumbar spine, upper limb, and lower limb regions 1 year before and 1 year after injury.

      Results

      The overall incidence of developing at least 1 musculoskeletal overuse injury within the first year after lower limb amputation was between 59% and 68%. Service members with unilateral lower limb amputation were almost twice as likely to develop an overuse lower or upper limb injury than those with mild combat-related injury. Additionally, service members with bilateral lower limb amputation were more than twice as likely to develop a lumbar spine injury and 4 times more likely to develop an upper limb overuse injury within the first year after amputation than those with mild combat-related injury.

      Conclusions

      Incidence of secondary overuse musculoskeletal injury is elevated in service members with lower limb amputation and warrants focused research efforts toward developing preventive interventions.

      Keywords

      List of abbreviations:

      AIS (Abbreviated Injury Scale), ICD-9 (International Classification of Diseases–9th Revision), ISS (Injury Severity Score)
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