|Vascular Amputee uses Mirror|
A physiotherapist at Holy Family noted that her cardiovascular amputee clients usually suffer less intense pain in their phantom limbs than clients who were involved in a traumatic accident, perhaps because they do not carry a 'frozen' image connected to their phantom limb.
The volunteer, a recent below knee amputee had been experiencing disruptive sleep because of phantom pain. Further investigation determined that he sensed his foot and toes contracted into his knee stump, a situation which would have complicated the mirror therapy treatment.
Working as a team, the trainer and amputee brought the phantom limb down to the level of the intact limb. This adjustment will also help balance when learning to walk with a new prosthetic.
If neuropathy is evident in the 'intact' foot of a cardiovascular amputee, it may present further complications. A possible solution is for the client to wear a plain sock on the intact foot so that the mirror image limb is believable.