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    Benefits of Functional Electrical Stimulation

    Last updated 2 days 21 hours ago

    Functional electrical stimulation (FES) is a system that transmits electrical pulses to muscles affected by paralysis or general weakness. FES can significantly improve the function of those muscles. This offers a new opportunity for individuals who have suffered from traumatic brain injury (TBI), stroke, cerebral palsy, multiple sclerosis, or an incomplete spinal cord injury that results in muscle paralysis or weakness.

    Quite often, these individuals are diagnosed with foot drop, a debilitating condition in which a person cannot properly lift up the foot and must drag it on the ground while walking. This causes great difficulty completing everyday tasks. With FES, the patient can attach a small device to the affected leg to stimulate the muscles. The use of the FES device often results in dramatic improvements in a person’s walking bilities and significantly enhances independence.

    Ability Prosthetics & Orthotics is a leader in helping patients regain their independence through state-of-the-art technology, such as FES systems. Those in the Philadelphia and Washington, D.C. areas can call (717) 253-9130 or visit our website to explore our custom prosthetics and orthotics.

    Prosthetic and Orthotic Options Following Foot Amputation

    Last updated 9 days ago

    Partial foot amputations are particularly common among diabetics. In fact, nearly a quarter of the millions of patients with diabetes in the U.S. will suffer a serious foot ulcer at some point, which has the potential to lead to foot amputation. Prosthetic specialists can create custom prosthetics or orthotics to suit the particular needs of each amputee. Since the goal of amputation is to preserve as much viable tissue as possible, amputees will have varying levels of tissue loss. For example, one person might only lose a toe, while another loses a significant portion of the foot. For both of these types of amputees, there are prosthetic and orthotic options.

    Ankle Foot Orthosis (AFO)

    An ankle foot orthosis is a commonly used device for partial foot amputees. This L-shaped device is applied to the foot, ankle, and leg to provide support and normalize gait patterns. Sometimes, an AFO may be combined with a toe filler, such as when a patient has had a toe amputation. One of the goals of wearing an AFO is to redistribute weight pressure to reduce the risk of additional trauma to the amputation site. Ideally, an AFO will help a patient avoid the need for a secondary amputation. There are different types of AFOs, such as those made from plastic that allow for a small degree of ankle movement. The traditional type of AFO is made with a metal frame and leather straps.

    Partial Foot Prosthetic

    For some patients, a prosthetic expert may recommend a partial foot prosthetic. These devices can be custom fabricated to match the remaining, natural foot and to perfectly fit the remaining tissue. This silicone prosthetic fits over the remaining tissue, much like a slipper. A partial foot prosthetic provides resistance for toe-off and supports the stability of the ankle.

    Ability Prosthetics & Orthotics provides custom prosthetics with diabetic-friendly interfaces for those with partial foot amputation. Our custom-made products suit multiple foot amputation levels. Residents of Philadelphia and beyond can contact a prosthetic specialist at (717) 253-9130 or visit us online to browse our orthotics options.

    Ability Adopts Usage of Limb Loss Resource Guide

    Last updated 10 days ago

    Ability Prosthetics & Orthotics, Inc. is pleased to announce the company has begun using the  style="color: rgb(56, 62, 148); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 21px; background-color: rgb(141, 140, 139);">Limb Loss Resource  style="color: rgb(56, 62, 148); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 21px; background-color: rgb(141, 140, 139);">Guide style="color: rgb(56, 62, 148); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 21px; background-color: rgb(141, 140, 139);"> across all 10 patient care facilities. The resource guide is a much needed, fresh, 21st century look at limb loss.  The guide is free to patients and families.

    A Look at Life Following Amputation

    Last updated 16 days ago

    The loss of a limb is a difficult event to cope with. Amputees often experience feelings of grief as they adjust to their new lives. However, many amputees actually feel a sense of relief, particularly if they had been struggling with a serious illness and can now begin the recovery process. Because of significant advances in prosthetic technology, amputees now have more options than ever when it comes to choosing an artificial limb that is right for them.

    You can hear more about adjusting to life after amputation and the benefits of prosthetic limbs by watching this news clip. You’ll hear from a survivor of the Boston Marathon bombing and you’ll hear from a survivor of bone cancer, both of whom lost a leg. Sandy, who survived bone cancer, notes that keeping a positive attitude is critical to improving quality of life following amputation.

    If you or a loved one is anticipating an amputation, connect with the custom prosthetic experts at Ability Prosthetics & Orthotics by calling (717) 253-9130. We are proud to offer exceptional prosthetic devices to families throughout the Philadelphia and Harrisburg areas.

    Helping a Loved One Cope with Amputation

    Last updated 23 days ago

    Whether sudden or expected, amputation is never easy to come to terms with. If your loved one has undergone amputation, he or she is likely facing a range of challenging emotions that mimic those involved with the grieving process. It’s important for your loved one to feel free to express those emotions as part of the natural healing process. While your family member is adjusting to life after amputation, you can support him or her by working closely with a prosthetic specialist, offering emotional support, and encouraging him or her to strive toward independence with the help of a custom prosthetic.

    Provide Emotional Support

    Every amputee will react to the situation in his or her unique way and experience different emotions. However, you can generally expect your loved one to experience denial, feel isolation, express anger, and suffer from depression. Encourage your loved one to talk about his or her feelings, rather than trying to ignore them. Your loved one may find comfort in joining a support group, talking to a mental health professional, or starting a journal. Remind your loved one that he or she is not alone in this ordeal.

    Offer Encouragement

    Tell your loved one that although the challenge of dealing with amputation seems insurmountable now, he or she will indeed adjust to the new circumstances. Your loved one will be able to do many of the things he or she previously enjoyed. If the amputation was anticipated, your loved one may have already met with a prosthetic specialist. If not, encourage him or her to meet with a specialist right away to discuss custom prosthetic options.

    Support Independence

    While it may be tempting to do everything for your loved one, it’s a good idea to let him or her exercise independence. As your loved one adapts to the new prosthetic, he or she can gradually begin helping out around the house, caring for him-or herself, and engaging in other day-to-day activities.

    Since 2004, the team at Ability Prosthetics & Orthotics has been dedicated to helping patients gain independence following amputation. Our outcomes-based service model means that our prosthetic experts will work closely with your loved one to ensure he or she has the proper prosthetic or orthotic for his or her unique needs. You can reach one of our patient care facilities in Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., or Harrisburg by calling (717) 253-9130.

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