Significance: Military service members are susceptible to traumatic extremity injuries that often result in limb loss. Tremendous efforts have been made to improve medical treatment that supports residual limb function and health. Despite recent improvements in treatment and novel prosthetic devices, many patients experience a wide range of clinical problems within residual limbs that can negatively impact the progress of rehabilitation programs while also impairing functional capacity and overall quality of life. Recent Advances: In addition to existing standard imaging modalities that are used for clinical evaluation of patients suffering from traumatic extremity injury, novel noninvasive imaging techniques are in development that may facilitate rapid and sensitive assessment of various aspects of traumatic extremity injuries and residual limb health. Critical Issues: Despite recent advances, there remains a clinical need for noninvasive quantitative imaging techniques that are capable of providing rapid objective assessments of residual limb health at the time of initial presentation as well as after various forms of medical treatment. Future Directions: Ongoing development of imaging techniques that allow for assessment of anatomical and physiological characteristics of extremities exposed to traumatic injury should greatly enhance the quality of patient care and assist in optimizing clinical outcomes.
Keywords: amputation; extremity trauma; imaging; military medicine.