Limb Loss Statistics

There are nearly 2 million people living with limb loss in the United States (1).

Among those living with limb loss, the main causes are vascular disease (54%) – including diabetes and peripheral arterial disease – trauma (45%) and cancer (less than 2%) (1).

Approximately 185,000 amputations occur in the United States each year (2).

In 2009, hospital costs associated with amputation totaled more than $8.3 billion (3)

African‐Americans are up to four times more likely to have an amputation than white Americans (4)

Nearly half of the individuals who have an amputation due to vascular disease will die within 5 years. This is higher than the five year mortality rates for breast cancer, colon cancer, and prostate cancer (5)

Of persons with diabetes who have a lower extremity amputation, up to 55% will require amputation of the second leg within 2‐3 years (6)


  1. Ziegler‐Graham K, MacKenzie EJ, Ephraim PL, Travison TG, Brookmeyer R. Estimating the Prevalence of Limb Loss in the United States: 2005 to 2050. Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation2008;89(3):422‐9.
  2. Owings M, Kozak LJ, National Center for Health S. Ambulatory and Inpatient Procedures in the United States, 1996. Hyattsville, Md.: U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics; 1998.
  3. HCUP Nationwide Inpatient Sample (NIS). Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project (HCUP). Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; 2009.
  4. Fisher ES, Goodman DC, Chandra A. Disparities in Health and Health Care among Medicare Beneficiaries: A Brief Report of the Dartmouth Atlas Project. Robert Wood Johnson Foundation2008.
  5. Robbins JM, Strauss G, Aron D, Long J, Kuba J, Kaplan Y. Mortality Rates and Diabetic Foot Ulcers. Journal of the American Podiatric Medical Association2008 November 1, 2008;98(6):489‐93.
  6. Pandian G, Hamid F, Hammond M. Rehabilitation of the Patient with Peripheral Vascular Disease and Diabetic Foot Problems. In: DeLisa JA, Gans BM, editors. Philadelphia: Lippincott‐Raven; 1998.