The success of your prosthetic doesn’t just depend on your prosthetist. It depends on you, too. You can contribute to your success as a lower-limb prosthetic user with consistent self-care and awareness of your needs. Here are five tips to help improve your prosthetic outcome, courtesy of New Hope Prosthetics & Orthotics.
See Your Primary Care Physician At Least Every Six Months
Schedule a visit with your PCP (Primary Care Physician) and discuss the condition of your residual limb and function of your prosthetic leg. If you need additional devices or are experiencing discomfort or instability, inform your PCP and they can write a prescription for you.
See Your Prosthetist At Least Every Three Months
Have your residual limb and prosthesis checked at least every three months, even if it doesn’t seem like anything is wrong. If you do notice anything unusual or concerning with your limb or prosthesis, schedule an appointment.
Practice Good Hygiene
Practicing good hygiene is a key component in a successful prosthesis outcome. Make sure to clean the inside of your liners. Cracks in dry skin, blisters, ulcers, and other foot sores can cause issues down the road and can lead to infection and possible surgery.
Staying active can improve your overall health. Standing and walking around in your prosthesis increases blood circulation in the lower limbs.
Your residual limb may change size and shape following your amputation. To maintain a good socket fit, you can use different sock-ply arrangements. You may have to experiment to see what fits best and make adjustments throughout the day. If you lose weight after being fit with your prosthesis, stay in touch with your prosthetist and PCP in case you need a smaller socket.