Caring for your Prosthesis and Limb

Caring for your residual limb

In order to prevent the skin from becoming rough and scaly, wash the residual limb with warm water and a mild soap every morning and evening. Dry the skin thoroughly or carefully dab it dry. Also note that putting the prosthesis on the morning after washing is often more difficult than usual, since warm water causes the skin on the residual limb to swell.

For additional care, one can find a number of over-the-counter products made especially for highly stressed skin, such as that on a residual limb. We usually suggest A&D ointment, but seek approval from physician before purchasing. Certain materials may work better together than others, depending on your specific situation; therefore, talk to your prosthetic professional for recommendations. If folds of skin or retracted scars have formed on the residual limb, they must receive particularly intensive care in order to prevent infections. Have your rehabilitation team advise you in this regard.

MOST IMPORTANTLY, examine your residual limb for injuries, pressure sores, and blisters on a regular basis. A mirror can help you look at the back of your residual limb. Regular massaging and careful stretching of the scar is another important component of care, but again, please contact your prosthetist/physician for recommendations that are specific to your unique situation.

Caring for your prosthesis

Clean the inside of your socket each day with a mild soap that you would use on your skin and wipe off any residue and/or dirt. Make sure to also clean your liner and socks per manufacturer suggestions daily to reduce chance of bacteria growth. Each prosthesis is very unique, so please consult your prosthesis if you have any questions.

Today’s prostheses are very advanced, containing electronic components that may require extreme caution when being exposed to dirt, water, or x-ray technology. Please consult your prosthetist if you plan to engage in or have regular activities that might expose                                                                                   you to these elements.