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Phantom limb pain

Phantom limb sensations were first described in 1551 by the French military surgeon. Phantom limb pain sensations are a perception of continued presence of the amputated limb. Phantom limb pain describes painful sensations that are perceived to originate in the amputated portion of the extremity.

Symptoms of Phantom Limb pain

  1. Patient generally describes sensations either as normal or an unpleasant warm tingling.
  2. Phantom limb pain is usually described as burning, aching, or cramping. In some cases it is described as crushing, twisting, grinding, like being stabbed with needles.
  3. Exacerbation of the pain may be produced by trivial, physical, or emotional stimuli.

Physical therapy for Phantom Limb Pain

  • Most of these patients with limb amputations will do better if they get a prosthesis within 6 months of the amputation.
  • Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation TENS Unit
  • Psychological therapy like biofeedback and relaxation treatment.


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