Epidemiology of limb amputation in Scotland

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Incidence of amputation is well documented with variations in gender, ethnicity, and geography being noted. UK data, particularly in the non-diabetic population is however lacking. To understand the needs of the population and determine how we should be directing prosthetic services we must first understand the demographics of those who are born with a limb difference or undergo limb amputation. This study uses amputation data rather than data from prosthetic clinics to calculate incidence and compare trends across Scotland.

Capture detailed information about the population of people living with limb difference in Scotland, and the medical services which they receive.

Using data linkage of routinely collected health records we reviewed the amputation and treatment records, and demographic profiles of all persons who had undergone an amputation or been born with a congenital limb deformity in Scotland from January 2012 to December 2020.

In excess of 10,000 cases were reviewed, which included persons undergoing upper limb amputation, lower limb amputation and those being born with a limb difference.

The incidence of amputation in Scotland has remained constant with the exception of 2020 when cases dropped. Variations were identified within the following areas; demographic profile, geographic location, social-economic background, and mortality after amputation.

This work, funded by The Centre of Excellence in Rehabilitation Research (CERR), uses data provided by patients and collected by the NHS as part of their care and support.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)31
Number of pages1
JournalProsthetics and Orthotics International
Publication statusPublished - 31 Dec 2021
EventInternational Society for Prosthetics and Orthotics 18th World Congress - Virtual
Duration: 1 Nov 20214 Nov 2021


  • epidemiology
  • limb amputation
  • Scotland


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