After traumatic upper-limb amputation (TULA), one-third of patients develop traumatic pathological grief (PG). However, are the other two-thirds unscathed? The main aim of the present study was to assess the rate of TULA victims claiming to have dealt with the consequences and showing no PG. The secondary objective was to determine positive and negative factors enabling and preventing coping.
A retrospective clinical study was conducted over an 11-year period in all adult TULA cases in our department. Assessment was on questionnaire. PG was assessed on the ICG (Inventory of Complicated Grief). Factors were assessed on physical, psychological, social, functional, esthetic and epidemiological criteria. Statistical analysis used StatView software, with the significance threshold set at p<0.05.
Functional and social impacts were significantly greater in case of PG. Thumb amputation was significantly associated with PG, while PG was significantly less frequent in case of amputation at the metacarpal base. Patients in PG had significantly more often undergone neuroma resection or stump revision surgery.
Fewer than a half of TULA victims achieved cure. Long-term prognosis depends on the patient's ability to accept the new situation, much more than on amputation level. Patients need support from the very first minutes, with follow-up extended well belong scar healing. Onset and healing of the narcissistic wound are inevitably delayed compared to skin healing.Le texte complet de cet article est disponible en PDF.
Keywords : Traumatic amputation, Upper limb, Reconstruction, Pathological grief, Psychological
Abbreviations : TULA, PG