Peer-Reviewed Journal Details
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Jefferies P.;Gallagher P.;Philbin M.
Disability and rehabilitation. Assistive technology
Staying “just normal”: preservation strategies in prosthesis use
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adjustment amputation assistive technology limb absence prosthesis use Prosthetics rehabilitation
© 2018, © 2018 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. Purpose: Research on prosthesis use is largely focused on understanding how persons manage the loss of a limb and begin their prosthesis use. We sought to elaborate an important aspect of a common concern of prosthesis users as they live day to day with their artificial limbs; specifically, the nature and management of threats that have implications for staying “just normal”. Methods: Grounded Theory methodology was employed to collect and analyse data from 24 interviewees, 17 weblogs, 17 autobiographies, and posts from four internet discussion forums. Results: Individuals that use prostheses are faced with a number of challenges and manage these through preservation strategies that ensure they stay “just normal”. These acts of preserving include “black-spotting”, “protective avoidance”, “vigilant risk-reducing”, “fail-safing”, “conserving” and “sufficing” through “playing it safe” and “resisting the recommended”. Conclusion: Prosthesis users manage a range of threats that are related to the limitations of prostheses. Knowledge of these issues and how they may be resolved can empower and support individuals coming to prosthesis use as well as ongoing users. The findings of this study also have implications for developing the consultation experience through discussing applicable threats and strategies for managing these. Implications for Rehabilitation Specific threats faced by prosthesis users along with the varied ways that these are resolved enable a greater insight into life with a prosthesis. The consultation experience can be enhanced through a discussion of potential threats relevant to the person, their prosthesis, and the way they live or wish to live “just normally” with a prosthesis. Insights into how persons manage threats associated with prosthesis use can help professionals to recognize and suggest strategies that may further enable their clients.
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