A Manual for Above-Knee Amputees


Extensive training in the use of an above-knee prosthesis is usually necessary if optimum gait and comfort are to be obtained. Early training is provided by the prosthetist during fitting trials.

Physical therapists usually provide the additional training as required. The new prosthesis should be worn initially for short periods and wearing time increased each day depending upon individual situations.

One of the greatest problems in obtaining good performance and maximum comfort is overweight of the amputee, especially the aboveknee. Fluctuations in body weight are reflected in the stump where changes in volume result in poor fit, discomfort, and consequently poor performance. A reasonable exercise program and a sensible diet are important factors in the health and well being of every one, but even more so in the case of the amputee.

Slight reduction in size of the stump can be accommodated by adjustments to the socket, but the prosthetist can do little about expanding the size of a socket and almost any increase in size of the stump means a new prosthesis, or, at the least, a new socket.

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Copyright 1996 - Alvin L. Muilenburg and A. Bennett Wilson, jr.

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