Above Knee Prosthetics – Trouble Shooting

Your prosthesis is designed to fit your residual limb and its unique shape.  The prosthesis has not changed but your limb may have undergone physical changes.

If you begin to experience discomfort, check to seeing if you are putting on your prosthesis properly. Is the pin aligned correctly?  Is the sock ply correct? Feel free to play around with the sock ply to make you feel comfortable. That means you may need to add or subtract a sock ply or two. Sometimes this is the solution.

However: if you have a suction socket, remember the socket should be directly on the skin with NO sock in between.

WHEN TO GO SEE MY PROSTHETIST?

These are possible reasons but not limited.  If you notice anything abnormal, then call your Ability Prosthetist to make an appointment.

  • If you experience pain, in your limb caused by your prosthesis.
  • If prosthesis is uncomfortable and it persists; and changing sock ply combinations doesn’t help.
  • If you experience redness that doesn’t go away within 20 minutes or that isn’t normal; or if  blisters, welts or any other skin conditions develop.  Discontinue use of prosthesis and call your Prosthetist.

Things to ask yourself, if prosthesis feels “weird”?

  • Have you recently changed your shoes?
    • If the heel is too high then:
      • Your prosthesis may push your prosthetic knee forward causing it to flex or buckle when you step down, which may cause you to fall.
      • You may feel like you are walking downhill
    • If the heel is too low then:
      • You may feel like you are walking uphill
      • Your prosthesis may push your prosthetic knee backwards causing it to lock faster and extend the leg  when you step down
      • You may feel pressure on the top front of your limb, where the socket is catching you.
  • Is the end of your limb reddish/purple?
    • This can happen if the liner doesn’t contact the end of your limb, and there is space or air, this can cause skin breakdown and form suction blisters on the end of the limb.
      • Please discontinue used of liner and prosthesis and call your Ability Prosthetist.
    • You may be wearing too many sock ply.
      • This allows for your limb not to settle into the bottom of the prosthesis and put pressure on areas that can’t take pressure.
    • The end of your limb may have shrunk and now there is not good contact with the socket.
  • Does the prosthesis feel like it’s moving or twisting on your limb?
    • Check your sock ply to see if it’s adequate.
    • If it feels like you’re waiting on your prosthesis to catch up or it’s feels “heavier” than normal, check the suspension. Make sure it’s tight enough.  Whether liner and pin or belt.
  • Is your liner slipping off your limb?
    • Your limb may have shrunk, contact your Ability Prosthetist.
    • You have excessive sweating so your liner won’t stay on.  Contact your Ability Prosthetist.
  • If you have any issues with your prosthetic knee, please contact your Ability Prosthetist.

Remember to discontinue use of your prosthesis if you hear abnormal sounds and contact your Ability Prosthetist. Please DO NOT try to fix your own prosthesis.