Identification of trunk and pelvis movement compensations in patients with transtibial amputation using angular momentum separation

The objective of this investigation was to assess movement compensations in patients with dysvascular TTA, patients with diabetes mellitus (DM), and healthy controls (HC) by examining patterns of generating and arresting trunk and pelvis segmental angular momenta during gait.

Patients with unilateral dysvascular transtibial amputation (TTA) have a higher risk of developing low back pain than their healthy counterparts, which may be related to movement compensations used in the absence of ankle function. Assessing components of segmental angular momentum provides a unique framework to identify and interpret these movement compensations alongside traditional observational analyses.

The study found that patients with amputation demonstrated differences in trunk and pelvis transfer angular momentum in the sagittal and transverse planes in comparison to the reference groups, which indicates postural compensations adopted during walking. However, patients with amputation demonstrated larger patterns of generating and arresting of trunk and pelvis rotational angular momentum in comparison to the reference groups.

These segmental rotational angular momentum patterns correspond with high eccentric muscle demands needed to arrest the angular momentum, and may lead to consequential long-term effects such as low back pain.