Amputation is a surgery that is done to remove a limb or parts of a limb. It is required when you have conditions like diabetes and peripheral arterial disease (PAD). Life after amputation can be hard, but you will get used to it. Many people are leading a healthy life after amputations.

Why Amputations Are Done

No one voluntarily cuts off their legs, hands, or fingers. Amputations are done only when they are necessary. Amputations are usually done due to infections or injuries. Injuries that cause deformity may lead to amputations. Following are some of the common reasons why a person may need an amputation:

  • Diabetes
  • Peripheral arterial disease
  • Frostbites
  • Cancer-related amputation
  • Infections
  • Congenital amputation


Diabetes, when not managed properly, can lead to amputations. Usually, toes will be amputated. But in severe conditions, feet and legs can be amputated. Diabetes can reduce the blood flow to the legs, which is why amputations will be required. Taking your meds and managing your sugar levels is the best way to avoid amputations.

Peripheral Arterial Disease

Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD), also known as peripheral vascular disease, is a condition that narrows or blocks the blood vessel that carries the blood from the heart to the leg. So basically, your legs or feet will not get enough blood. Common causes of PAD include:

  • Diabetes
  • Smoking
  • Old age
  • High BP
  • High Cholesterol
  • Atherosclerosis


Frostbite is an injury that occurs when you are exposed to freezing temperatures. Hands, feet, nose, and ears are some of the common body parts that can be affected by this condition. This condition can result in a loss of feeling in the affected area and cause permanent damage to the tissue.

Superficial frostbite will affect only the surface of the skin, while deep frostbite will affect the tissue too. Wearing proper attire can prevent frostbite.

Cancer-Related Amputation

Cancer is a pretty common reason for amputation in India. Cancer, in its severe stages, will spread very fast. The only way to stop the spread is amputation. Sarcoma is a type of cancer that affects bones and tissue. These cancers are sometimes too large to be removed, so amputation is necessary in such cases.


Serious infections can result in sepsis. Sepsis can affect blood flow to the legs, feet, fingers, and hands. It can also affect the tissues in these areas. Sometimes sepsis cannot be controlled by medications. The infection will spread if proper action is not taken. If it is not possible to control it through medication, amputation is necessary.

Congenital Amputation

Sometimes kids are born with some kind of deficiency. Surgery may be required in the later stages of their lives to reach their full potential. Birth deficiencies include:

  • Uneven limb lengths
  • Weak muscles
  • Fragile skin

These are some examples of birth defects for which you might need surgery. You may need prosthetics as a temporary fix. Surgery can be done if your day-to-day activities are affected.

Types of Amputations

Amputations are divided into two types: lower extremity amputations and upper extremity amputations. If it is not obvious, lower extremity amputations are amputations that are done below the hip region. Upper extremity amputations are amputations done to the upper body.

Lower Extremity Amputations

The following are the common types of lower extremity amputations:

  • Foot and toes
  • Ankle disarticulation
  • Transtibial (below the knee)
  • Knee disarticulation
  • Transfemoral (above the knee)
  • Hip disarticulation

Upper Extremity Amputations

Some of the common upper extremity amputations include:

  • Fingers and hands
  • Wrist disarticulation
  • Transradial
  • Elbow disarticulation
  • Transhumeral
  • Shoulder disarticulation
  • Forequarter

Common Types of Amputation Procedures

The goal of amputation is to unlock the full potential of patients’ bodies. Also, save the lives of patients by putting an end to the spread of cancer or infection. Every situation is unique and requires different types of procedures. Following are some of the common procedures carried out by doctors for amputations:

Standard Amputation

Standard procedures will be followed for general limb amputations. So, generally, the surgeon will cut the particular limb and cover it with skin. The patient may have plans to use a prosthetic leg. If so, the surgeon will cover the limb with enough soft tissue to support the prosthetic leg. When the limb is covered by soft tissue, it reduces the risk of infection and improves comfortability.

Osseointegration (OI)

Osseointegration is the process of removing your limb and inserting a steel implant to make room for a prosthetic limb. The prosthetic leg will be attached to the steel implant instead of the terminal limb. This improves the weight-bearing capacity of the prosthetic leg. It makes walking and other activities easier for the patient.


Rotationplasty is an optional procedure for patients who undergo amputation due to cancer or other infections. The surgeon will remove the cancer-affected area, rotate the lower part, and reattach it to the body. This procedure allows patients to use their bodies to their maximum potential even after the amputation.

What to Expect

Amputation surgery is pretty scary. It is not an everyday routine for people. Learning more about amputation may ease this feeling. If you know what to expect before, during, and after the surgery, you will have peace of mind.

Before the Surgery

Your doctor will ask you to follow a diet plan. Also, they will ask you not to eat anything for six hours prior to the operation.

Further, they will advise against taking certain medications, such as blood thinners. It may result in bleeding. You are not allowed to smoke or drink for a few days before the operation.

During the Surgery

The first thing you need to know is that you won’t feel a thing. You will be sleeping throughout the procedure, so no worries. Some operations may require local anaesthesia, still you won’t feel any pain. So don’t be scared of the procedure.

Your surgeon will remove the damaged tissue. Next up, they will smooth uneven bones and seal the ends to prevent bleeding. By shaping the ends, they make it easier to fit a prosthetic leg. Finally, they will sterilise the wounds.

After the Surgery

While some surgeries require you to stay in the hospital, most surgeries are done as outpatient treatments.

Your surgeon will keep tabs on your health and recovery process. They might prescribe some antibiotics and painkillers.

For the first few days, it will be pretty hard to do your daily activities. But once you get used to your body, things will be much better.

Advantages of Amputations

  • Amputations enable you to use your body to its full potential
  • Amputations prevent infections from spreading
  • Improved quality of life due to reduced pain and increased mobility

The aforementioned are some of the primary advantages of amputation. Basically, amputation can save your life in some situations.

Amputation at BM Cosmetics

BM Cosmetics has some of the best plastic surgeons in Chennai. We look out for your wellbeing, even after the surgery. BM Cosmetics has high-tech tools that are of international standard. BM Cosmetics is the right place for amputations that you can trust. BM Cosmetics has earned people’s trust by providing exceptional service for over 17 years. If you are not sure whether you need amputation, come down for a consultation. Give us a call at 9952099620 to book an appointment.

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