OBJECTIVE: To systematically review the literature on the metabolic costs of activities of daily living (ADL) in persons with a lower limb amputation (LLA).
DATA SOURCES: A literature search was undertaken in the Pubmed, Embase, CINAHL, CENTRAL, and PsycINFO databases using keywords and synonyms for LLA, metabolic costs, and ADL. The last search was performed on November 29th, 2017.
STUDY SELECTION: Studies were included if they met the following 2 criteria: participants were adults with a (unilateral or bilateral) LLA and metabolic costs were measured while participants performed a physical activity or ADL.
DATA EXTRACTION AND SYNTHESIS: Data of 1,912 participants from 61 studies were included in the systematic review and meta-analysis. The studies used different terms to describe metabolic costs. Participants were recruited in different settings, relatively healthy, with few comorbidities. Limited data were available on metabolic costs of other activities than walking with a prosthesis. A linear mixed model analysis was performed based on the means reported, with study as unit of analysis and test results of different groups and measurement conditions as repeated measures within the unit of analysis. Predictors entered in the analysis were e.g. level and reason of amputation, age, weight, and height. During walking, oxygen consumption (ml O2/kg/min) and heart rate (beats/min) increased with a higher walking speed and a more proximal amputation. Additionally, oxygen consumption was determined by the interaction terms walking speed x amputation level and walking speed squared. Heart rate was determined by the interaction term walking speed squared.
CONCLUSION: During walking, oxygen consumption (ml O2/kg/min) and heart rate (beats/min) increased with a higher walking speed and a more proximal amputation. Data on metabolic costs of other activities were limited. The poor quality of the studies and the relatively healthy participants limited generalizability of the results of the meta-analysis.