Functional and psychosocial status of Haitians who became users of lower-limb prostheses as a result of the 2010 earthquake Article

cited authors

  • Randolph, MG; Elbaum, L; Wen, PS; Brunt, D; Larsen, J; Kulwicki, A; De La Rosa, M

fiu authors


  • The January 12, 2010 earthquake devastated Port-au-Prince, the capital of the Republic of Haiti, and its surroundings. Among the 300, 000 injured people, 1200 to 1500 people underwent traumatic/surgical amputations. The purpose of this study was to describe the functional and psychosocial impact on prostheses users who had a traumatic lower-limb amputation after the earthquake of 2010 in Haiti. We recruited 140 participants in collaboration with a large health care organization in Port-au-Prince from October 2011 to May 2012. The participants underwent an evaluation of physical impairments and completed questionnaires translated into Haitian Creole. The Trinity Amputation and Prosthesis Experience Scales (TAPES) and the Locomotor Capabilities Index (LCI) were used in this study. The questionnaires were administered verbally in Haitian Creole by a trained staff. We conducted descriptive statistics and t-tests using SPSS for data analysis. The participants had a mean (SD) age of 34.9 (12.0) years; 51.4% were women; 48.6% were transfemoral amputees. The mean (SD) scores of TAPES general adjustment (3.65 [0.59]) and adjust to limitation (3.67 [0.86]) were higher than the score for the social adjustment (2.58 [0.49]). The LCI showed that more than 90% of the subjects were physically independent in self-care; fewer were independent in walking on uneven ground or inclement weather (69%). The relatively poor social adjustment is consistent with the literature that describes limited acceptance of people with physical disabilities in Haitian society. Prostheses users in Haiti would benefit from a health delivery infrastructure that also addresses the psychosocial reintegration of individuals with physical disabilities.

publication date

  • January 1, 2014

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

start page

  • 177

end page

  • 182


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