Premier Prosthetics & Orthotics Blog 

Being Athletic with a Prosthetic Limb

May 18, 2021
It’s that time of year again: sunshine, rising temperatures, and potential cabin fever has everybody ready to get outside and enjoy some fresh air. Wearing a prosthetic limb doesn’t mean you can’t be active, even when the activity is competitive. All it takes is a bit of preparation and giving some extra attention to your prosthetic.

Care For Your Residual Limb

We’ve already discussed general care tips to keep your residual limb healthy every day, but when it’s sports season, the dial is turned up to eleven. The dirt, sweat, and oil that can get trapped in your prosthesis pose an increased risk for irritation and even infection. While sweating is inevitable, the accumulation of irritants like sweat and dirt, however, can be mitigated. Be sure to carry extra prosthetic socks or liners, or both. Make sure they are clean and dry when you put them on so they will work as intended.

The more activity and motion that you are doing, doesn’t wear on just your prosthetic, it wears on you. Friction between your prosthetic and your residual limb will be greater than normal, and more movement means more impact between the two. You must be careful so the skin around your prosthesis won’t suffer quicker than usual breakdown. The pain of blisters and sores hurt, but pain is the least of your worries if they decide to open up. Prevent a nasty infection by practicing good hygiene and maintaining a snug fit within your interface.

Care For Your Prosthetic Limb

Conversely, your prosthetic limb is taking the brunt of any external force and is undergoing a lot more stress than normal. Ensure your prosthesis lasts by inspecting it for damage more closely than you typically would. Look for loose screws, cracks, and delamination. You should even keep an ear out for any odd noises during use as this can sometimes be your only warning before malfunction.
Equally as important is the fit of your socket, not only for the sake of your skin, but also for the integrity of the prosthesis. If your socket isn’t fitting correctly, don’t attempt anything strenuous, as you may strain your residual limb.

After staying confined to our houses for over a year, we’re all eager to get outside and enjoy the sun. At Premier Prosthetics and Orthotics, we understand this is most keenly felt by our patients, and we want you to experience all this summer has to offer! For more information on how we can help you be active and healthy this season, contact us at 314-262-8900, or contactus@premierpando.com
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