The prosthetic world is making great strides and the buzz surrounding robotic prosthetics is evidence of a looming surge forward. The truth is amputees will still have to wait for five to ten years for fully functional thought controlled prosthetics. Meanwhile, there are many options available that provide partial or full mobility depending on the individual.
Now that the staples are out and the wound is fully healed, it is time to ready the residual limb for prosthetics. A few measures can drastically increase your chances of qualifying for prosthetics and ensure that everything goes as planned with your artificial limb. Below are some of the critical exercises to prepare for the prosthetic.
Position Your Residual Limb
The right positioning of your residual limb helps to prevent tightening and shortening of the muscle. These issues seriously limit the capacity to experience a full range of motion. The proper positioning of your limb is to keep the hip and knee as straight as possible. To achieve this:
- Keep your residual limb flat while lying or sitting and the knee as straight as possible. Avoid propping the limb on blankets or pillows.
- Spend at least 20 minutes daily proning (lying on your stomach). This action helps to stretch your hip muscles.
- Avoid hanging or dangling your residual limb while sitting. Instead, use a flat board or amputee board to support your limb while sitting.
Desensitizing Your Residual Limb
During the healing process, the residual limb can be extremely sensitive to touch. To reduce the sensitivity, gently touch, tap, rub and massage the residual limb often. Increase the pressure as your tolerance rises. This activity proves useful when it is time to fit the prosthesis.
Shaping Residual Limb
The residual limb can remain swollen long after the surgery. A swollen limb will not fit into the artificial leg socket. The shaping basically means bringing down the swelling which is typically done using a compression stocking. Your doctor should be able to prescribe the best stocking for this purpose. Some tips for wearing the compression sock include:
- Keep the compression snug and tight and wear it for as long as possible. Ideally, remove it only when bathing or coming into contact wit water.
- Make regular appointments with your prosthetist to monitor your progress. Your compression sock may need to be changed depending on the results.
Maintain Daily Limb Hygiene
A daily residual limb hygiene ritual will accelerate your eligibility for custom orthotics and prevent infections and other problems. Tips for daily cleaning and care include;
- Use a mind antibacterial soap and warm water to wash the limb at least once every day.
- Ensure that you dry your residual limb thoroughly before putting on compression sock.
- Pay attention to the skin at the bottom of the limb and behind the knee when cleaning. Use a soft wash cloth to gently scrub these areas and the entire limb’s surface.
- Wash, rinse and air dry your compression socks. Wear a clean one every day as the sock picks up acids and salts from your sweat.
For more information visit here: https://www.medeastortho.com/
MedEast Post-Op & Surgical
3001 Irwin Rd
Mt. Laurel, NJ 08054