Satisfaction with cosmesis and priorities for cosmesis design reported by lower limb amputees in the United Kingdom: instrument development and results

Nicola Cairns, Kevin Murray, Jonathan Corney, Angus McFadyen

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Study Design: Cross sectional questionnaire study.
Background: Amputee satisfaction with cosmesis and the importance they place on cosmesis design has not been published in the literature.
Objectives: Investigate the current satisfaction levels of amputees in the United Kingdom with their cosmesis and the importance placed on attributes of cosmesis design to inform future cosmesis redesign.
Methods: Questionnaires were administered to lower limb amputees in the United Kingdom. Satisfaction scores and the overall importance ranking of cosmesis features were calculated. Statistically significant relationships between two demographic, satisfaction, or importance variables were tested using Fisher’s Exact tests (one-tailed) at a significance level p=0.05.
Results: Between 49% and 64% of respondents reported neutral or dissatisfied opinions with the cosmesis features (greater than 50% for five of the nine features). The three most important features identified were shape matching the cosmesis to the sound limb, free prosthetic joint movement underneath the cosmesis and natural fit of clothing over the cosmesis.
Conclusions: The results indicate that current cosmesis satisfaction levels of amputees in the U.K. are below what the medical device industry and clinical community would desire. The most important cosmesis features identified by the sample can be used to direct future cosmesis design research.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages8
JournalProsthetics and Orthotics International
Early online date10 Dec 2013
Publication statusPublished - 2013


  • prosthetic design
  • Amputation
  • questionnaire
  • cosmesis
  • transfemoral
  • transtibial
  • lower limb
  • satisfaction
  • importance

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