Turkish Journal of Medical Sciences




Although mirror therapy (MT) and phantom exercises (PE) have been shown to reduce pain, the efficacy of these methods in terms of pain, quality of life (QoL), and psychological status (PS) has not been investigated and compared to date. The aim of this study was to determine whether there is any difference between MT and PE in the treatment of phantom limb pain (PLP).Materials and methods: Forty unilateral transtibial amputees (aged 18-45 years) participated in this study. The subjects were randomly divided into `MT group' and `PE group'. QoL was assessed using Short-Form 36 (SF-36), psychological status using the Beck depression inventory (BDI), and pain intensity using a visual analog scale (VAS), before and at the end of the program, and on the 3rd and 6th months thereafter. Results: All assessments for all parameters improved significantly in both groups (P < 0.05). Comparison of the two groups revealed a significant difference in changes for VAS and BDI in all measurements, and in pre- and posttreatment scores for all SF-36 parameters (except for Role-Emotional) in favor of the MT group (P < 0.05). Conclusion: While pain intensity decreased and QoL and PS improved in both the MT and PE groups, these improvements were greater in the MT group.


Mirror therapy, phantom exercises, phantom limb pain, physiotherapy, rehabilitation

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