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Do’s and Don’ts for Prosthetic Care

Did you know that there are approximately 2 million people living in the United States with limb loss? Of that, there are approximately 185,000 amputations a year. A few moths after your amputation surgery comes time for a prosthetic. Congrats! But how do you take care of it and prevent problems? Check out these tips! 

 

 Do: 

- Clean your prosthetic socket often, especially during the warm weather. This will prevent dried perspiration and dirt from accumulating on the inner surface of your prosthetic. AFTER wiping your prosthetic with a damp cloth, dry it thoroughly BEFORE putting it back on. 

- If you start to sweat, remove your liner, dry it and your limb and put the liner back on. An antiperspirant will also help. Excessive sweating can cause your liner to slip which can cause compromised suspension. If your liner slips off it creates airspace which can cause water blisters. 

- Make sure your shoe height is correct. If it isn’t, it can put a strain on your limb and the surrounding joints. A black shoe with white shoelaces

- Have a “leg” bag handy for emergencies. This bag should include limb socks, pull socks/bandages, antibiotic ointment, antihistamine ointment, etc. 

- Wear a prosthetic interface that fits your body. You can also improve the fit of your prosthetic in various ways: gel products, a prosthetic sock, by changing your liner or sock to a thicker/thinner model, or by adding/removing lightweight-ply socks. Ply sock

 

Do Not: 

- Immerse your prosthetic in fresh/salt water for a long period of time. 

- Swim/shower/bathe with your prosthetic on. To be able to do these activities with your prosthetic, talk to your prosthetist about a waterproof prosthetic. Swimming pool outside with a black x over it

- Use soap that contains alcohol or unknown chemicals unless you’ve been specifically instructed. Instead, use mild soap and water and let dry. 

- Store your prosthesis in a hot environment such as in direct sunlight in a parked car, near an oven or near a radiator. Instead, store it against a wall where it won’t get bumped or knocked over. 

 

About the Author: 

Alicia Woodman is No Limbits’ Community Manager. She holds a degree in Communication and Legal Studies from the University of Illinois Springfield and is a former Ms. Wheelchair Illinois USA. Alicia was born with Spina Bifida and a RBKA as of 2020. In her free time, Alicia loves watching the TV show House, shopping and crafting. 

 

Sources: 

https://www.amputee-coalition.org/resources/tips-for-taking-care/

Https://amputeestore.com/pages/the-dos-and-donts-of-skin-care-for-amputees 

Https://www.cornelloandp.com/blog/artificial-limbs-Massachusetts/new-amputees-and-prosthetic-limbs/

https://prostheticsolutions.com/resources/prosthetic-care/

https://www.reachops.com/caring-for-your-prosthesis/

 



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