Limb amputations in the U.S. occur for a variety of reasons. The most common is a vascular problem such as diabetes or peripheral vascular disease, accounting for 82 percent of all lower extremity amputations. Trauma is the second most common reason, and affects more men than women. The leading causes of trauma-related lower extremity amputations are machinery injuries (40%), powered tools and appliances (28%), firearms (9%) and car accidents (8%).
If you’re one of the two million people in the U.S. living with the loss of a limb, you know how important physical rehabilitation is for those seeking to recover after an amputation. Therapy helps amputees learn how to adjust and recover as much of their functional life as possible. The good news is that surgical techniques, rehabilitation methods and prosthetic designs have improved greatly, and so most amputees are able to function at high levels.