Article Details

Research Database: Article Details

Citation:  Armstrong, A.J., Hawley, C.E., Darter, B., Sima, A., DiNardo, J., Inge, K.J., (2018). Operation Enduring Freedom & Operation Iraqi Freedom Veterans with amputation: An exploration of resilience, employment and individual characteristics. Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation, 48 (2), 25.
Title:  Operation Enduring Freedom & Operation Iraqi Freedom Veterans with amputation: An exploration of resilience, employment and individual characteristics
Authors:  Armstrong, A.J., Hawley, C.E., Darter, B., Sima, A., DiNardo, J., Inge, K.J.,
Year:  2018
Journal/Publication:  Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation
Publisher:  IOS Press
Full text:  MS Word   
Peer-reviewed?  Yes
NIDILRR-funded?  No
Research design:  Survey research

Structured abstract:

Background:  The US has deployed over 2.7 million Americans into Iraq and Afghanistan since 2001, and approximately 1,700 of them have experienced amputation due to trauma in the field. Those veterans also experience high rates of PTSD, depression, and substance abuse. The interaction between injuries, mental health conditions, and "manly" military culture has an impact on the veterans' future prospects.
Purpose:  The goal of the study is to understand the resilience of veterans with amputations, particularly relating to employment and individual characteristics.
Setting:  The survey was delivered to veterans living all across the united states.
Study sample:  The 716 veterans surveyed all had major amputations (greater than a partial hand or foot amputation) and had fought in Iraq or Afghanistan.
Data collection and analysis:  The survey collected demographics of the participants, as well as a 10-item questionnaire designed to test resilience. They measured amputation quality of life measures, such as pain, social participation, and time spent wearing the prosthesis. They also measured overall quality of life and ability to work. The data was analyzed with standard statistical methods
Findings:  165 veterans responded, having a response rate of 23%. It is speculated that this is due to research fatigue. 91.5% of the veterans reported that their amputation was related to their military service, with the majority of amputations being lower extremities. 92.1% of participants did not return to active duty, and for 79.2% of those it was due to their disability. 39.3% of them reported being employed. 35% were unemployed, and 26% were retired.
Conclusions:  Veterans experiencing less pain and greater prosthetic usage, employment, and social participation reported greater resilience. Mean scores for the veterans were within the average for the general population.

Disabilities served:  Amputation
Populations served:  Veterans