Work of Vacuum Suspension Goes On Inside

CHICAGO — Liner fitting is integral to success with
a vacuum suspension system, said a speaker here.

Andy Marsland
Andy Marsland

“All of the work is going on inside,” Andy
Marsland, CPO, said during an Ohio Willow Wood-sponsored workshop held
during the American Academy of Orthotists and Prosthetists Annual Meeting and
Scientific Symposium.

Regardless of the type of components used in vacuum
suspension, the inside of the liner should form an intimate fit with all of the
crevices in the patient’s residual limb. At the same time, the visible
outside liner should be fairly nondescript, he said, thus providing a better
sealing with the prosthesis.

Marsland offered advice for the creation of an optimal
liner fit. First, ensure that liners remain long on the residual limb —
rising high on the thigh for transfemoral amputees, if necessary, he said.
Fitters should create proximal and distal seal, and be sure the liner is as
thin as possible.

To eliminate some problems with proper fit, he also
suggested using custom designs and allowing the patient time to settle into the
socket distally before applying the vacuum level.

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