Immediate Post-Operative Stage
Day 1 Post Surgery Until Sutures Removed
The primary goals are to promote healing along the suture site and minimize soft tissue edema or swelling.
During this stage a residual limb elastic compression garment or shrinker is donned over the residual limb and sterile dressings. This will provide the compression necessary to prevent excessive swelling.
Early Post-Operative Stage
Time (suture removal + 2 to 3 weeks)
During this time frame the primary goal is continue to promote suture site healing, minimize residual limb swelling, and to begin reducing residual limb sensitivity.
To reduce residual limb sensitivity, the residual limb should be massaged. This will prepare the residuum for the forces a prosthesis will translate onto it during walking.
For more aggressive shaping of the residuum we often perform a figure of 8 wrap with ace bandage over the residual limb shrinker. This technique is used when the residuum has excessive dog earing or a bulbous bottom end.
In this case, with two weeks of figure of 8 wrapping over the shrinker the limbs bottom circumference reduced 25 percent.
Time (Sutures Removed Until Suture Liner Fully Healed)
Once the residual limb volume has reduced significantly, the suture line is healed with no scabbing, and the physician states that it is time for a prosthesis to be worn, we will begin the process of casting and designing your initial prosthesis. During this time frame, attaining physical and occupational therapy at a facility, in an outpatient setting, or in your home will be highly beneficial in your rehabilitation process.