Veteran resilience following combat-related amputation


amputation, health care, metatheory of resilience and resiliency, military personnel, trauma, resilience, US Veterans


Introduction: Amputation following combat-related injury places substantial stress on survivors and their spouses. The purpose of this study was to explore the experiences of combat-related amputation among military Veterans and explore pathways to resilient behaviours. Methods: This qualitative study used a purposeful sample of male US military Veterans and their partners. We used the Metatheory of Resilience and Resiliency (MRR) as a conceptual framework for understanding the drives that promote growth through adversity and disruptions. MRR was also used to characterize each Veterans’ state of resilience after the amputation. Results: The majority of Veterans returned to their baseline level of functioning (reintegration back to homeostasis) and that some Veterans are functioning better than before the amputation (resilient reintegration). Discussion: Veterans who appear to have built a life post-amputation exhibited the following resilience drives: finding perspective and purpose (universal resilience), living consistent with one’s values and character strengths (character resilience), and accessing positive social support (ecological resilience). Practitioners should be alert to these themes among Veterans with traumatic amputation.

Original Publication Citation

*Jeppsen, J., Wood, D.S., & *Holyoak, K. (2019). Veteran resilience following combat-related amputation. Journal of Military, Veteran and Family Health, 5(2), 61-67.

Document Type

Peer-Reviewed Article

Publication Date



Journal of Military, Veteran and Family Health


English, French


Family, Home, and Social Sciences


Social Work

University Standing at Time of Publication

Assistant Professor