Introduction to Prosthetic Components
What follows is a brief, yet informative description of the different types of prosthetic components, including:
- Proprio Foot®
- Flex-Foot® Axia
- Flex Symes
- K2 Sensation
- Single-Axis Foot
- SACH Foot
- Icecast® Anatomy
- Pressure Pads
- Iceflex® Endurance
- Iceflex® Balance and Locks
the Proprio Foot®, the world’s first intelligent foot module, provides unprecedented physiological benefits for trans tibial (below knee) amputees. A wide, automated range of ankle flexion with proven Flex-Foot® dynamics means that the functionality it provides is currently the closest one can get to the human foot.
- The Proprio Foot® thinks for itself, responds brilliantly to changing terrain and transforms the approach to stairs and slopes as well as level-ground walking.
- The Proprio Foot® appropriately angles itself to assist when sitting and standing up is easier and more natural.
- The Proprio Foot® is fitted with a calibrated alignment control feature.
Overall, the Proprio Foot® creates the feeling of improved proprioception with a more balanced, symmetrical, confident gait reducing strain on the back, hips and knees.
Ceterus® sets the joy of life in motion with a prosthesis that provides all the right moves.
- The Flex-Foot® patented J-shape and CarbonX® Active Heel work together, resulting in less energy being expended which allows one to walk further for longer periods of time.
- The Ceterus®system controls the rate of forward propulsion and delivers a smooth, natural gait.
- Energy is stored from heel strike to foot flat then returned to promote active tibial progression for effortless movement.
- Responsive rotation for a smoother range of motion.
- When the user pivots, the torsion control cell is gradually twisted and compressed.
- A low profile version of Ceterus is also available.
- Users acknowledge that Ceterus® creates a progressive resistance that provides natural flexibility and does not stop abruptly.
- Fully-adjustable shock absorption for optimised functionality.
- A built-in vertical shock pylon that absorbs impact during the entire stance phase ensures that stress is diminished on all parts of the body.
- Adjustments to the shock pylon can be fully controlled by the user to accommodate any type of activity.
- Ceterus® allows users the freedom to engage in varied activities without ever having to change feet or sacrifice comfort and performance.
The new Flex-Foot® Assure by Ossur is the perfect solution for diabetics and those suffering from vascular disorders. Flex-Foot® Assure incorporates basic Flex-Foot® technology that allows for a soft, smooth roll-over that ensures a stable gait with the benefits of dynamic response.
- Full-length toe lever and standard foot cover with an attachment plate.
- Active heel with a cushion wedge.
- Low build height.
The closed-cell foam heel wedge aids the transition from heel to toe and provides a cushioning effect at heel strike.
Flex-Foot® Axia prosthetic foot to feature a design that actually guides the foot through each step, contributing to stability, balance and easy roll-over.
- Offers a multi-axial range of motion with moderate energy response and low build height.
- Ideally positions itself for users with medium to long residual limbs who require a comfortable and consistent gait.
- Suitable for those who engage in low to moderate levels of activity.
- Advanced technology and functional refinements built into the foot offer the ability to navigate rough terrain with safety and confidence.
Flex-Foot® is synonymous with high-performance carbon fibre feet and issuitable for all ages and activity levels.
Dual sprints in the heel and forefoot provide shock absorption at heel strike and a smoother, more natural roll-over for excellent, all round walking performance.
- Lightweight carbon construction
- Shock absorption at heel strike
- Smooth roll-over
- Good energy return
- Secure, controlled movements
- Adapts to various speeds and surfaces
- Stress reduction for the sound extremity
- Suitable for Otto Bock mobility grades 2 and 3
- When stress is placed on the heel, the Trias cushions the impact which results in increased comfort and simultaneously supports plantar flexion of the foot
- The combination of foot shell and connection cap provides a natural finish to the cosmetic cover of the prosthesis
- The overall structure of the IC30 Trias is similar to the human foot
The College Park Tribute® offers a simple and valuable solution for those suffering from dysvascular disorders. The combination of College Park design principles, multi-axial transverse rotation and a full-length toe lever each contribute towards achieving a high degree of mobility.
- The College Park Tribute® is a simple foot or ankle unit; hence, no maintenance is required.
- Multi-axial function provides superior stability over uneven terrain.
- Controlled, dynamic response designed for low to moderate activity.
- Full-length toe unit provides increased comfort.
- Customised gait Adjustable Stride Control®.
- 12 month warranty.
Vari Flex is designed to provide a slender prosthesis with an attractive cosmetic finish, at the same time enabling excellent energy return.
- Lightweight and easy to assemble
- Slender profile
- Available with a standard 30mm graphite pylon as well as a male pyramid
- Provides easy attachment to endo-skeletal pylon components
- Ideal for new as well as existing lower limb amputees
- Of special benefit to the trans femoral (above knee) amputee due to ease of coupling of the foot and pylon with endo-skeletal knee systems.
- The proprietary J-Shape enables effortless tibial progression while the active heel acts as an efficient shock-absorber
- A low profile version that caters for a shorter stature is also available
The Flex Symes foot design is based on the well-known Flex-Foot® concept which is a carbon foot module connected to an actively deflecting carbon heel.
Flex Symes is a prosthetic foot specifically designed to cater for those who have undergone a symes (ankle disarticulation) or pyrogoff amputation.
The improved alignment adapter offers angulations and adjustments in ML/AP planes.
- Circular alignment wedges ease alignment and fittin
- Active energy-storing heel keeps residual limb and joints in better condition
The K2 Sensation provides quality of life and is a completely hassle-free option.
- The K2 Sensation provides a multi-axial range of motion
- Cushions each step and helps maintain control over barriers such as ramps and curbs
- Full-length toe lever, flexible keel and integrated multi-axial design enable a smooth transition from heel strike to toe.
- Provides added relief and comfort to those suffering from dysvascular disorders
- The K2 Sensation has a low profile finished height of 25/8”
- Includes an integrated titanium pyramid and anatomical foot cover with a sandal toe for easy socket attachment and attractive cosmetic finish.
The Elation combines heel height adjustability and energy return.
- The heel height can be adjusted anywhere between 0 and 5cma (2”) by pushing a button
- The carefully designed contour enables flexibility and is energy efficient which ensures a smooth roll-over
- The foot adjusts to the load applied
- A narrow, anatomically correct foot cover with sandal toe is bonded to the foot, which is suitable for dress shoes, sandals and other types of footwear.
The Greissinger® Plus includes a joint that adjusts to uneven walking surfaces that could be hazardous to less flexible feet. The Greissinger® Plus enables one to move more freely and securely across indoor and outdoor walking surfaces.
- Secure standing and walking
- Good roll-over properties
- Multi-axial function conforms to uneven surfaces
- Elastomers that come in three degrees of stiffness enables individual adjustment
- Natural gait pattern
- Suitable for mobility grades 2 and 3
The Single-Axis Foot is well-suited for low activity people with trans femoral (above knee) amputations. The Single-Axis Foot is designed to enable one to reach foot-flat rapidly and securely; and since it is constructed without toes and in two sections, the sole can be replaced. It also comes in different heel heights, foot shapes and size ranges.
- Especially suitable for trans femoral (above knee) fittings
- High level of security
- Natural appearance
- The Single-Axis Foot carries a maximum weight of 100 kgs/220 pounds
The simplest type of non-articulated foot is the SACH (Soft Ankle Cushioned Heel) foot.
- Rigid keel
- Ankle action is provided by the soft rubber heel which compresses under load during the eartly part of the stance phase of walking.
The rubber heel wedges are available in three densities:
Notwithstanding the use of good quality components (socket, lock and sleeves) or a high performing suspension system, the prosthetic fit is of paramount importance. A comfortable prosthetic socket will ensure a successful rehabilitation outcome. At Roger Wolfson and Associates we pride ourselves in having achieved a combined 50 years’ worth of experience in prosthetic socket fittings.
Sockets are custom-made by Roger Wolfson and Associates and tailored to suit individual needs.
Icelandic Direct Casting (IDC) sockets are fabricated with the Icecast® Anatomy pressure bladder and the Icelock® 600 series of locking and attachment components. The Icelock series allows for interchangeable suspension (pin, lanyard, valve), which obviates the need for the construction of a new socket.
- IDC provides a total surface bearing socket through even pressure distribution during casting and fitting.
- IDC guarantees a replicable socket fitting.
- IDC communicates with users direct in addressing specific problem areas.
Using the Icecast® Anatomy pressure casting, the prosthetist undertakes a unique socket making process. Integrated ContourCell® shaping chambers can be inflated to achieve an anatomically correct socket shape. The increased control over the socket shape enhances user comfort and stability.
Pressure Pads are specifically designed to relieve pressure on bony prominences and other sensitive areas of the residual limb. Pressure Pads are made using a unique blend of silicone and provide user comfort in that they enable pressure redistribution and equalization.
The Iceflex® Endurance suction suspension sleeve is designed to fit over any definitive prosthetic socket.
When used with a distal locking device, it provides additional user security. In some cases, the Iceflex® Endurance can serve as a locking device in itself when used over a liner and definitive socket with a suction valve, ensuring that no air enters the definitive socket from above.
- Enhanced security and stability.
- Pre-flexed to facilitate knee flexion.
- Strength and durability for high active users.
The new, economical Iceflex® Balance sleeve features soft silicone and a nylon/Lycra® cover. The nylon ensures strength and lycra provides elasticity, while silicone offers optimal adhesion. This winning combination guarantees comfort and durability.
- Easy to wear.
- Iceflex® Balance contains a soft silicone inner layer which is gentle on the skin.
- Iceflex® Balance is suitable for low to moderate impact levels.
From surgery to rehabilitation to the fitting of your prosthesis – The journey: part 2 – Learning about prosthetic limbs and their technicalities
Modern prosthetics work so effectively nowadays and look so convincing that often, you may not be able to detect that one is being worn. Those with prosthetic legs can often walk, run and even swim as though they were using natural limbs. Nowadays, prosthetic technologies are available that enable the wearer of prosthetic arm and hands to have individual control of all five fingers.
Prosthetic limbs rank high among the world’s greatest inventions and provide a great boosting in terms of optimism and independence – key factors in dramatically improving quality of life.
What do prosthetics involve?
Prosthetics, also known as artificial limbs, are an artificially constructed substitute for a limb that could have been lost through either a congenital condition which is present at birth, illness, wartime injury or accident.
A cosmesis has little function and is worn for prosthetic reasons
A type of prosthetic known as a cosmesis is designed purely for cosmetic reasons and has little or no function. Artificial hands often fall into this category.
Other prosthetics are highly functional and have little or no cosmetic value, which artificial legs designed to be covered by trousers are a typical example and are often little more than metal rods and wires.
Types of prostheses
Any part of the body, from the ear or nose to the finger or toe could be replaced by a prosthesis in theory. However, in practice there are four common types of prosthetic limbs that are designed to replace either a partial or complete loss of an arm or leg.
- A below the knee, also known as a BK or transtibial prosthetic consists of a prosthetic lower leg which is attached to an intact upper leg.
- An above the knee, also known as a AK or tranfemoral prosthetic consists of a prosthetic lower and upper leg which includes a prosthetic knee,
- A below the elbow, also known as a BE or transradial prosthetic consists of a prosthetic forearm.
- An above the elbow, also known as a transhunmeral prosthetic consists of a prosthetic lower and upper arm which includes a prosthetic elbow.
- Above the knee (AK, transfemoral): A prosthetic lower and upper leg, including a prosthetic knee.
- Below the elbow (BE, transradial): A prosthetic forearm.
- Above the elbow (AE, transhumeral): A prosthetic lower and upper arm, including a prosthetic elbow.
At Roger Wolfson and Associates we firmly believe that the more you know about what goes on behind the scenes with prosthetics, the better equipped you will be to get the best out of your new limb. Give Roger a call on (011) 640 7198 and send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
From surgery to rehabilitation to the fitting of your prosthesis – the journey: part 1
The aim of this two-part article is to offer a concise overview of your journey towards your ultimate goal of a successful prosthetic outcome – that is, to restore your mobility.
So that you can lead an active and normal life, your therapy team, which includes doctors, therapists your prosthetist and not to mention you and your loved ones, will all band together to help you achieve independence.
An average indication is that the rehabilitation process can take anything from two to six months. The length of time this process takes can vary considerably taking various factors into account such as how well your prosthesis fits and your own levels of motivation.
The information that follows outlines a number of helpful suggestions to aid your rehabilitation and recovery. However, it should be borne in mind that the instructions you receive from those on your rehabilitation team should take priority since it is those individuals who are best qualified to evaluate your individual situation.
Whether you have recently found out about your amputation or have known for a length of time, it is important to always remember that you are not alone. Your physicians are there to offer support, answer your questions and find you the solutions that will work best for you.
Pre-surgical examinations and discussions
If you are to undergo a planned amputation surgical procedure, you will be examined several times in great detail prior to surgery. Your doctors will explain what takes place during surgery and what will take place after the operation has been performed.
In the case of a traumatic accident, such conversations will happen post-surgery.
You have the opportunity to ask any questions that are important to you during these discussions and it is a good idea to note down anything that you may wish to ask your doctor prior to these discussions. Always remember that it is the task of the physician to clearly explain things clearly.
Preparation in advance
Talk to your prosthetist about the types of prostheses available and what is best suited to you
It is of critical importance that you talk to your prosthetist about the types of prostheses available and what is best suited to you in terms of your lifestyle needs.
If at all possible, it is a good idea to begin therapy exercises that you will use after the amputation surgery before your surgery takes place. This will enable you to strengthen your muscles in advance. It is also a good idea to practice moving properly from the bed to the wheelchair. This advance preparation can make the time after the operation a lot easier on you. Of course, your medical team are there to guide when it comes to the exercises most suitable for you.
Counselling and psychological support
Undergoing an amputation represents a big change in your life and it is always helpful to seek counselling and psychological support which can greatly assist you in working through any issues or fears you may have, while taking the weight off of yourself as well as your friends and family.
Engaging with other amputees
We strongly recommend that you engaging with other amputees who have also undergone amputation surgery. Others will offer their opinions and advice and will be able to share tips on everything to do with using your new prosthesis.
At Roger Wolfson and Associates we are here to answer your questions and put you in touch with those that offer support in numerous ways. Call us on (011) 640 7198 or drop Roger a mail at email@example.com.
3 important questions you should ask prior to undergoing a lower limb amputation
Statistics show that for every 1000 people in South Africa there are approximately 1.5 amputees.
The main reasons behind why and how amputations occur include:
- Vascular disease which covers diabetes and peripheral arterial diseases
In this article we address three important questions you should consider prior to undergoing a lower limb amputation which can be either below the knee (trans tibial) or above the knee (trans femoral).
- At one point should I consult with a prosthetist?
To ensure optimal prosthetic outcomes, it is critical that you consult with a prosthetist prior to undergoing surgery.
The process begins with an overall evaluation of your mobility and lifestyle expectations as well as an analysis of the various details involved in your condition as well as the nature of the upcoming surgery.
A number of surgeons see this process as invaluable especially in determining whether certain surgical techniques should be used that could enhance desired outcomes post-surgery.
Detailed knowledge and understanding of the specifics involved in your situation greatly assist the prosthetist to fabricate and fit a prosthetic that will work best for you.
- How do I prepare for the initial prosthesis fitting
The time it takes before a prosthesis can be worn varies from person to person, and can also depend upon the nature of the surgery as well as your own unique circumstances and can even be influenced by surgical techniques such as Immediate Post-Prosthesis (IPOP).
Your surgeon, your prosthetist and your physical therapist all play very important roles in your rehabilitation. Your residual limb is bandaged and treated immediately post-surgery in order for your surgical wound to effectively heal. It is crucial that you follow the recommendations of all professionals involved in your recovery.
Taking the appropriate time to heal and wear compression stockings to decrease the swelling are both key factors in preparing you for your initial prosthesis fitting.
- What takes place during physical therapy in the prosthesis fitting process?
Post-operative physical therapy ensures that you retain the function of your residual limb and prepare the area for your temporary and then your definitive prosthesis. Physical therapy is important in maintaining and expanding mobility and activity levels during the prosthesis fitting process.
Maintaining a positive mental attitude is vital to successful recovery
The role of maintaining a positive mental attitude cannot be underestimated in successful recovery and it is not uncommon for a patient to discover that they have greater mobility once accustomed to a new prosthesis as opposed to living with an unhealthy limb prior to surgery.
If you would like to know more about what to do prior to undergoing surgery for an amputation or need to ask Roger a question call us on (011) 640 7198 or drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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