Phantom limb pain may occur after the accidental removal or surgical amputation of a limb. Phantom limb pain is the experience of pain in the limb that is no longer present. The clinical management of phantom limb pain is essential in the overall reduction of patient rehabilitation and poor patient outcomes. A patient’s degree of phantom limb pain is influenced by their personal response to loss and pain and can have devastating effects to a person’s social performance, occupational role, family role, relationships, and involvement in activities or hobbies. Like most chronic pain, phantom limb pain decreases the quality of life. Not all amputees who suffer from chronic pain respond to traditional therapies. The purpose of this integrated review of the literature was to explore current research and determine the efficacy of mirror therapy in the treatment of Phantom limb pain in amputees. A database search of CINAHL, PubMed (MEDLINE), and OneSearch was conducted. Mirror therapy had no reported side effects, was inexpensive, and was capable of being practiced at home and at the bedside. Relevant findings in the literature revealed a significant decrease in phantom limb pain when using mirror therapy for more than 4 weeks. Although limited research on the use of mirror therapy as an intervention for amputees, existing research supports the efficacy of mirror therapy for the management of phantom limb pain. Nurses and healthcare providers need education on mirror therapy to advocate for their patients to ensure the best possible outcome and reduction of phantom limb pain. Further research on mirror therapy is needed.

Thesis Completion




Thesis Chair/Advisor

Allred, Kelly


Bachelor of Science in Nursing (B.S.N.)


College of Nursing


Orlando (Main) Campus



Access Status

Open Access

Release Date

May 2016