Term of Award

Spring 2000

Degree Name

Master of Science

Document Type and Release Option

Thesis (restricted to Georgia Southern)


Department of Health and Kinesiology

Committee Chair

W. Kent Guion

Committee Member 1

A. Barry Joyner

Committee Member 2

James L. McMillan


BACKGROUND: Cardiovascular disease (CVD) remains the number one cause of death in the United States and is more prevalent in certain groups including amputees.

OBJECTIVES: To identify the underlying risk factors of CVD in an amputee population and determine if those risk factors differed between the vascular and non-vascular amputee groups. In addition, the amputee risk profde was compared to the general population.

METHODS: A survey consisting of previously validated CVD risk factor questions was sent to 39 support groups across the U.S.

RESULTS: From the 170 participants, four highly prevalent risk factors were identified in the amputee profile: high cholesterol, hypertension, diabetes and inactivity. The vascular amputees were significantly older than nonvascular amputees, had an increased occurrence of diabetes (71% vs. 13%, p=.001), increased overweight prevalence (71% vs. 29%, p=.019) and decreased number of days of alcohol consumption per week (.64 vs. 1.24, p=.018). It appears that three risk factors are elevated above the U.S. population norms for the following categories: high cholesterol and diabetes in the entire amputee sample and hypertension in the female amputees.

CONCLUSION: Excess risk of CVD from previously mentioned risk factors may explain the increased rate of death due to CVD in the amputee population. The results from this study indicate that special attention should be focused on the modification of risk factors emphasizing high cholesterol, hypertension, diabetes and inactivity.


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