Prosthetics 101

If you’re a new amputee (or a friend or family member), you have many questions. What happens next? What can I expect? Can I resume activities I used to enjoy? Many of those questions are best answered by your prosthetist and the rest of your health care team as they create your treatment plan. You can also take a look at Info for New Amputees elsewhere on this site.

But what about the prosthetic devices themselves? Whether you’re a new amputee or have been using prosthetic systems for many years, you may not be aware of all the recent exciting advancements in the development of artificial limbs. Breakthroughs have come in new materials and new electronics, as well as new kinds of therapies.

Today’s prosthetics have a wide range of functions and benefits that can help you achieve your desired activity level and lifestyle. It’s important to have a basic understanding of how a prosthetic system works, and the technologies available to you.

Lower limb: 3 keys to function

Does your prosthesis work well for you? Or not? For most people, there are 3 critical factors that make the difference.


Lower limb: Computer knees

Prosthetic knees controlled by microcomputer technology have set the standard for stability and ease of use, especially for people who want to resume an active life.


Lower limb: About feet

Today’s prosthetic feet, including many that mimic the action of an anatomical foot and add other benefits, can help you meet your activity goals.


Lower limb: How liners work

For someone who wears a lower limb prosthesis, liners are key to comfort. They also combine with the suspension system to connect your limb to the prosthesis.


Lower limb: Keeping your leg on

Various forces are at work in a prosthetic socket, the shell that encases your residual limb and connects you to the rest of your prosthesis. Different suspension systems have varying control over two forces that can cause pressure points or sores: rotation and shear.


Upper limb: Myoelectric 101

The latest myoelectric prostheses offer incredible functionality, providing improved control and better looks.


What to consider when it's time for a new prosthetic knee

When the time comes to replace your prosthetic knee, you want to make sure you have considered all your options carefully.



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