Diabetes is the leading cause of lower limb amputation. People living with diabetes have a higher chance of getting amputated if wounds and ulcers fail to heal. However, a prosthetic is a developed device meant to substitute lost body parts through trauma, disease or congenital disorder (Deng et al., 2016). People who wear prosthetics may have been amputated after suffering from pandemic such as peripheral vascular disease, blood clots, diabetes and also injuries. Diabetes amputees are many benefits from lower limb prosthetics. Prosthetics vary with a person’s physical appearance and functional needs such, as their future plans and economic activities (Agarwal, 2013).
Suitable prosthetics should have a manageable weight, durable, and easy to operate to offer a sense of normalcy in the amputee’s life once more. Prosthetic materials are therefore made lightweight and include elements such as plastics (polyethene, polypropylene, acrylics and polyurethane), wood for earlier prosthetics, rubber, titanium, aluminum and composites such as carbon fibre. Physiatrist coordinates the process of rehabilitating an amputee. Limbs prostheses may be classified into upper-extremity prostheses and lower-extremity prostheses (Carroll & Edelstein, 2006).
Lower-extremity prostheses provide a replacement for hips disarticulations. Additionally, it gives Tran’s femoral prosthesis, knee disarticulation, Syme’s amputation, feet, partial feet and toes (Deng et al., 2016). The level of amputation categorizes lower extremity prosthesis. Tran’s femoral prosthesis works for amputees who have the leg above the knee missing. Due to the complex function of the knee, these amputees have an awkward moment to gain its originality (Deng et al., 2016). New models such as hydraulics, carbon fibre, mechanical linkages, motors, computer microprocessors and innovative combinations are however being developed to ease the use of these prostheses by amputees. For amputees who have a limb below the knee missing, a transtibial prosthesis is used as a substitute. Physical therapists train people with leg prosthesis to walk again. They issue verbal instructions to the person or use tactile cues. Research is suggesting treadmill usage in physical therapy as it poses challenges of walking with the prosthesis; therefore, yielding better results (Edelstein & Moroz, 2011).
Prosthetic legs have their advantages. As opposed to the use of crutches, when prosthetic legs are well fitted, the patient experiences satisfactory gaits and expends way less energy while walking. For amputees who have lost both legs, the other choice apart from prosthetic legs is a wheelchair. Prosthetic legs offer them an opportunity to access areas that would otherwise be inaccessible in a wheelchair. People with prosthetic legs can go upstairs. They experience higher mobility and a greater sense of independence. Psychologically, wearing prosthetic legs allows amputees to blend in with the rest of the population. They acquire a better psychological outlook on life and feel more comfortable. Prosthetics also allow for long walking distances. Utilizing prosthetics for sports allows amputees to take part in their sport of choice. They may engage in these sports for economic gain or personal satisfaction as hobbies. (Edelstein & Moroz, 2011).
Besides the numerous advantages of prosthetic legs, there are several disadvantages associated with their use. Some of these demerits are decreasing functionality; deficits in motor control due to a lowered sensory perception in the amputated leg, asymmetry in leg kinematics consequently caused by the different mass and inertia of a separate pin and energy loss (Deng et al., 2016). Prosthetic limbs are quite costly and may work to the disadvantage of needy amputees, thus an issue of affordable access. The period taken to design a prosthetic leg may cause despair for people in desperate need to make use of the legs. Prosthetics also often require high skill of the prosthetics for regular use. The user also needs to make a careful selection and order right or else the prosthetics would not be as effective.
Generally, prosthetics ease amputees from physical and psychological suffering due to their inability to use their extremities. They increase the mobility of the amputees while using expanding. They reduce the dependence of amputees on other people by giving them access and also increase their confidence (Shurr et al., 2002).