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Below Knee Prosthetic Devices in Kansas City

Suspension Methods for Below Knee Prostheses

Prosthetics / April 2, 2018

By: Phil Henry, CPO

All below knee prosthesis requires a suspension mechanism to allow the prosthetic to function properly. At Horizon Orthotic & Prosthetic Experience, we specialize in below the knee prosthesis in Kansas City, and have trained experts on staff who understand all the intricacies of prosthesis.

We have helped countless amputees in Kansas City, Topeka, and beyond get through the physical and emotional journey that is below knee prosthesis. Our entire team is passionate about providing solutions that get our patients back to the speed of life.

Keep reading to hear from one of our ABC-certified Orthotists, Phil Henry, about the available options for suspension methods for below knee prosthesis in Kansas City.

Prosthetic Suspension systems

How the prosthesis stays on the residual limb is known as suspension. A below the knee prosthesis in Kansas City (also known as a Transtibial prosthesis), must maintain proper suspension in order to achieve functional benefit of the device.

Poor suspension can lead to secondary gait deviations. As a result, these deviations cause the wearer to feel unsafe, waste energy to accommodate for lack of suspension, and causes a major fall risk. In order to accommodate the most patients, there are several options for suspension systems for the below knee prosthesis Kansas City.

Commonly used suspension methods for below knee prosthesis in Kansas City

  • Suction- When the residual limb is seated inside the socket, an expulsion valve (one way valve) that expels the air without return is used. The suction is achieved with use of a seal in gel liner or suspension sleeve. More advanced systems can include a vacuum suction system that expels with more force than that of an expulsion valve.
  • Pin lock or locking mechanism- A locking gel liner is used for this mechanism. It allows a pin that protrudes at the end of the liner that engages the lock mechanism. Once locked in place, the prosthesis will remain locked until disengaged by a release lever
  • Thigh corset and knee joints- typically seen for use in the shorter below knee residual limbs due to the lack of stability, but serves as a suspension option without use of a waist strap and gives a tight circumferential wrap round the thigh
  • Cuff suspension strap- Use of a “fork strap” that wraps around the bony prominences of the bottom or distal end of the femur. The capture of the bone allows the strap to rest on once prosthesis is lifted off the ground
  • Self-suspending sockets- (also known as supracondylar or supracondylar-suprapatellar suspension) This is use of higher medial/lateral trim lines that can, if needed for more stability, include the knee cap. This system also captures over the bony landmarks of the distal end of the femur. This system does not require a strap or additional component.

The prosthetist will make the selection of the best below knee suspension system. Each suspension system will usually have a pro and a con and should be discussed in detail with the treating practitioner on which suspension system is best for you.

Why choose HOPE for below knee prosthesis in Kansas City?

Horizon Othotic & Prosthetic is the premier provider of custom-designed below knee prosthesis in Kansas City. We use the latest state-of-the-art technology, with the personalized touch you deserve. We strive to provide each patient with the best care in the industry to get them back to their life as quickly as possible.

Contact us today to learn more about below knee prosthesis in Kansas City!

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Call us at 913-956-0050