Vacuum Suspension Decreases Pistoning but Still Not Preferred

Glenn K. Klute, PhD
Glenn K. Klute

CHICAGO – In a randomized crossover trial comparing a pin-lock suspension socket and a vacuum socket, pistoning was decreased in the vacuum but comfort and ease of use is preferred within the pin-lock system, according to Glenn K. Klute, PhD.

Participants were given 3 weeks to acclimate to each system and were asked to answer questions and undergo measurements based on an additional week of wear following the acclimation period.

“The reason for the additional week is because when you ask questions on a questionnaire, you want to make sure that the subject has the right time frame in mind when they answer the questions,” Klute said at the American Academy of Orthotists and Prosthetists Annual Meeting and Scientific Symposium, here.

The study started with 20 participants and ended with only five due to varying circumstances. Measurements compared between the five participants who completed study revealed a 1-mm displacement of pistoning in the vacuum socket, and 6-mm of displacement in the pin-lock system. Limb volume differences between the two systems were not statistically significant. The activity level of participants in the pin system was nearly twice that of the same participants in the vacuum system.

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