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CoE for Limb Loss Prevention and Prosthetic Engineering

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The primary mission of the Department of Veterans Affairs Rehabilitation Research and Development Center of Excellence for Limb Loss Prevention and Prosthetic Engineering is to improve the quality of life and functional status of both Veterans who are at risk for lower extremity amputation and Veterans and service members who have undergone lower extremity amputation.

Volunteer request for VA study with older man with prosthetic legSeeking Volunteers

VA Research Study – on Below-Knee Amputations
We are doing a research study to see if using a Fitbit pedometer and an online peer group changes how much people with a lower limb amputation walk.  Participants will receive a Fitbit pedometer and be paid for their time.  Participation will last for 2 years. 

We are looking for people who are 18 - 89 years of age who:

  • have Internet Access,
  • a below-knee amputation involving  only one leg,
  • used a prosthesis for 6 months
  • walk with their prosthesis at least 4 hours per day. 

If you are interested in learning more about the study and being screened eligibility, please call Jan Pecoraro at 206-764-2962.   This study is open to Veterans and non-Veterans. 

Lead Researcher: Glenn Klute, PhD 1660 S. Columbia Way, Seattle, WA 98108.  This study is funded by the U. S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

a finite element foot modelLimb Loss Prevention

Our Center’s Limb Loss Prevention research aims to reduce functional and anatomical limb loss by exploring the disease processes that lead to aberrant limb function and by developing novel, state-of-the-art technologies for studying the foot. Our research focuses on two Veteran populations: those with musculoskeletal impairment at the foot and ankle, where pain and limitations in mobility are the key issues; and those at risk of lower limb amputation due to diabetes and foot ulceration, where loss of the foot or leg is a major concern.

The goals of our research include:

  1. Quantitative comparison of different treatment options for foot deformities that can lead to loss of limb function.
  2. Insight into the pathomechanics of diabetic foot ulcer formation.
  3. Novel research tools that can be employed in a wide range of clinical studies.

Controlled Energy Storage and Release FootProsthetic Engineering

Our Center’s Prosthetic Engineering research focuses on limitations in mobility and discomfort experienced by all major cohorts of Veterans with lower limb amputation, including those with amputation secondary to peripheral vascular disease and diabetes, the aging combat-injured Vietnam Veteran, and the young, active Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) / Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) combat-injured amputee. Our research compares existing prosthetic technologies and develops innovative new approaches.

The goals of our research include:

  1. Determine the efficacy of currently-prescribed prosthetic interventions and treatments.
  2. Investigate novel approaches that offer breakthrough advances to the current standard-of-care.