Glossary

GLOSSARY

  • Adaptive Equipment: any equipment that helps you to walk or move safely
  • ADL: Activities of daily living
  • AK: Above knee amputee
  • Alignment: The socket is attached to the prosthesis at certain angles. These angles need to be adjusted by your prosthetist and are determined by the position and anatomy of your limb, how you walk, and the characteristics of the artificial foot and/or knee.
  • Ambulation: Walking
  • Assistive device: Any equipment that helps you walk or helps you with activities of daily living
  • Atrophy: Diminishing size and strength of muscles
  • Bilateral: Missing two limbs
  • Biofeedback: A form of self-hypnosis
  • BK: Below knee amputee
  • Check socket: clear plastic socket made first to see if the socket fits properly
  • Components: The term used for the different parts that make up your prosthesis
  • Contracture: Tightening of muscles and joints, limiting motion around a joint (knee or hip)
  • Contralateral limb: The unaffected or remaining limb
  • Desensitization: Reducing sensitivity of limb by massage or other means
  • Distal end: End of stump
  • Donning and doffing: Putting on and taking off a prosthesis
  • Donning tube: A hollow tube that helps fit an elastic tubular bandage onto your residual limb
  • Edema: Accumulation of excess fluid in body tissues (swelling)
  • Endoskeletal: Prosthesis that has a socket attached by a “pylon” or tube to the foot or knee, and covered with a soft cover
  • Exoskeletal: Prosthesis that is solid from socket to foot
  • Femur: The thigh bone
  • Fibula: The thinner support bone next to the tibia in your lower leg
  • Flexible inner socket: Flexible plastic sometimes used inside the socket, which can sometimes provide additional comfort
  • Gait training: Learning to walk with help of the therapist and/or prosthetist
  • Gel Liner: Silicone type gel sock that goes next to your skin for protection. There are many types and thicknesses
  • Hard socket: A socket made of hard materials only
  • Harness: Straps that keep your arm prosthesis on
  • HD: Hip disarticulation, amputation of the hip
  • Hemipelvectomy: Amputation of half of the pelvis
  • Ischial containment socket: An above knee socket that cups your ischium and helps stabilize and control your prosthesis
  • Ischium or ischial tuberosity: The bone you sit on
  • KD: Knee disarticulation, amputation of the knee
  • KT: Kinesiotherapist
  • Laminted: Type of socket that is made from carbon fiber, fiberglass and resin
  • Lateral: To the side away from the body
  • MAP clinic: A place where special testing is done to check the way you move or walk
  • Medial: Toward the mid-line of the body
  • Mirror imaging: A technique that is specifically used to help with phantom limb pain
  • OT: Occupational Therapist
  • Orthotist: A patient care practitioner who makes or fits a wide variety of bracing devices
  • Peer support: A trained amputee talking to another amputee before or after amputation
  • Phantom limb pain: Painful sensations in part of the limb that is no longer present
  • Phantom limb sensation: Sensation in the limb that is still present
  • Physiatrist: Doctor who specializes in rehabilitation
  • Pistoning: The movement up and down in your socket. This will happen when the fit or suspension is not adequate
  • Plantar flexion: To point the foot down
  • Proprioception: The awareness of the position of your body
  • Prosthetist: pronounced “pros tha tist” the one who makes your artificial limb. Note: The prosthetist is not a doctor but frequently and increasingly has a 4-year college degree in prosthetics or a related field.
  • Prosthesis: pronounced “pros thee’siss” this is the artificial limb
  • Prostheses: pronounced “pros thee’ seez” the plural of prosthesis
  • Prosthetic (adjective) pronounced “pros thet tic” (for example, prosthetic deparment, prosthetic knee, prosthetic foot. Your artificial limb is not a prosthetic; it’s a prosthesis)
  • PT: Physical therapist
  • Pylon: The “pipe” that goes between the foot and the socket
  • Quad socket: An AK socket design that has four distinct sides, and the ischium rests on top of the edge vs. being contained in an ischial containment socket
  • Residual limb (also residuum): Technical term for the part of your limb that is remaining (stump)
  • Revision surgery: Surgery to modify the residual limb
  • Rigid Compression Dressing: These are usually made from casting
  • ROM: “Range of Motion” these are exercise materials to improve flexibility and prevent contractures
  • Shrinkers: Elastic stockings meant to reduce the swelling or “edema” in your limb
  • Socket: The most important part of the prosthesis, which is custom made to hold your residual limb in place
  • Soft Compression Dressing: Usually elastic bandage materials that are reapplied often to maintain compression and reduce swelling
  • Stump: The more common name for the part of the limb that is remaining
  • Socks: Socks that go over your limb. These come in different thicknesses (ply). The higher the ply, the thicker the sock-usually 1-2 ply, 3 ply and 5 ply
  • Suspension: The way the socket stays on your limb
  • Symes: Amputation at the ankle joint
  • Tapping: A technique used to decrease the sensitive feelings in a residual limb
  • Thermoplastic: Type of socket made from a plastic that is heated and formed over the model of your limb (different from laminated)
  • Tibia: The bone below your knee (shin bone)
  • Transfemoral amputation: An amputation above the knee
  • Transmetatarsal amputation: Amputation through the foot
  • Transtibial amputation: An amputation below the knee