April 8, 2019 |

Post-Operative Fall Safety

lower limb amputationFollowing a lower extremity amputation, there is a long learning curve to perform basic tasks and regain function and mobility. It can take several months to gain full use of a new prosthetic limb, further enhancing the risk for falls. Allow POSI to be your patient’s partner during this unique journey.

Once POSI is notified by a physician via an order (verbal or written), our clinicians will obtain measurements to provide appropriate size protector and shrinkers.

The patient will be consulted and educated on the prosthetic rehabilitation program at either the time of protector/shrinker fitting or in advance (pre-amputation). Long-term prosthetic care and estimated timeline of care will also be discussed.

The protector of the physician’s choice will be fit within the timeframe prescribed as follows:

  • Dressing
  • Waist belt to reduce distal migration if indicated
  • Protector
  • Post-operative sock

Our clinicians will return to follow-up on the protector fitting and don shrinkers 48-hours after application of protector or the timeframe provided by the physician as follows:

  • Dressing
  • Post-operative sock
  • Shrinker
  • Protector

Additional post-operative socks and shrinker will be left in patient rooms to allow for a proper hygiene regimen.

Goals of post-operative prosthetic treatment include:

  • Reduce wound healing time and edema
  • Prevention of contractures and begin residual limb shaping
  • Reduce likelihood of re-admittance or delayed healing as a result from a fall

For more information on fall post-amputation, please see:

  •  A total of 41 subjects, with 782 follow-up person-months in total, had 11 fall-related injury incidents (14.1/1,000 person-months). During follow-up, 56.1% of subjects reported falling and 26.8% reported fall-related injury.

Wong, C.K., Stanford T.C., and Guohua L. 2016. “Risk of Fall-Related Injury In People With People with Lower Limb Amputations: A Prospective Cohort Study”. Journal of Rehabilitation of Medicine 48:80–85.

  • In a study of 77 individuals receiving a transfemoral amputation between 2000 and 2014, 46 patients received prostheses. Of these, 22 individuals experienced 31 falls that resulted in a visit to the ER and/or hospital admittance. The additional fall cost for individuals requiring an ER visit was $18,000. For patients who had to be hospitalized, this extra expense was more than $25,000.

Prosthetic knee type may determine cost of care for amputees (2017, July 11) retrieved 12 July 2017 from https://medicalxpress.com/news/2017-07-prosthetic-knee-amputees.html.

Post-Operative Fall Safety
Download the Post-Operative Fall Safety Pamphlet

Our Team Can Help!

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POSI prosthetist and technicians are trained and certified by the following manufacturers for use of their products:

Ossur: Touch Bionics, I-Limb

Otto Bock: Bebionic, Michelangelo

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