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Armed Forces: Orthopaedics

Volume 458: debated on Monday 12 March 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many service personnel have suffered amputations as a result of wounds received on active service in (a) Iraq and (b) Afghanistan. (119395)

The Complex Rehabilitation and Amputee Unit (CRAU) at the Defence Medical Rehabilitation Centre (DMRC), at Headley Court in Surrey, has since 1 June 2006 (the date on which it became fully operational) treated a total of 42 service amputees. Of these, 14 were casualties from Op. Telic (Iraq) and six from Op. Herrick (Afghanistan).

Prior to CRAU becoming operational, comprehensive information on the number of military personnel who have suffered amputations as a result of wounds received on active service was not held centrally. To provide this information would require the examination of the individual medical records of each patient who has been classified as very seriously injured (VSI) or seriously injured (SI) in Iraq and Afghanistan. These records can only be viewed for non-clinical reasons with the express consent of each individual concerned, to protect patient confidentiality.