Prosthetic Fitting Process

What to Expect

The entire POA team – from our patient care representatives to our fabrication specialists and prosthetic clinicians – is dedicated to making your experience as comfortable and pleasant as possible. Whether you are a new amputee or have worn a prosthesis for many years, this guide will give you a good understanding of what to expect during the prosthetic fitting process at POA – and how we differ from the rest!

The POA Difference

Because everything is fabricated on-site, we can accomplish in one day what many other facilities do in a week or two. If you live locally, we will adjust the timing and length of your appointments based on your availability. We ask those of you who will be traveling from out of town to allow 8-10 (working) days when planning your stay. We usually like to see our out-of-town patients on Sunday evening to assess their needs so we can begin the work week with a plan.

Another element that separates our practice from the rest is our expansive open concept patient care area. It encompasses a therapeutic, energetic mix of amenities which include: several sets of parallel bars for fitting and alignment; a patient lounge for relaxation, conversation, coffee/tea, etc.; a fully equipped gym and personal training staff; a golf simulator; and a great play area with a climbing wall for our POA kids! There are also several fun places to visit in Orlando over the weekend or to try out your test prosthesis. We are conveniently located close to Disneyworld, Universal Studios/Islands of Adventure and Sea World – with beautiful beaches less than an hour away!

Step 1: Evaluation

We will begin gathering information from you, including an assessment of your strength and activity level. We will also discuss and determine your goals and expectations. The prosthesis we design will be created specifically with your lifestyle in mind.

Step 2: Liner Fitting/Casting

You will be measured for and fit with a silicone liner. The liner is the foundation of your prosthesis, and will fit your limb like a glove. For those residual limbs with bony prominances, neuromas, etc., a customer liner will be designed. Because our liners are made on-site, they are usually available for fitting the next day.

Step 3: Socket Casting

We will make a plaster cast impression of your residual limb. This may be messy! You can bring a pair of old shorts to this appointment or we will provide you with some disposable ones.

Step 4: Test Socket Fitting

The plaster cast mold will be used to create your first test socket. It is made of a clear plastic which allows your prosthetist to look inside and check the fit as well as make any necessary adjustments to improve it. You should wear or bring a pair of shorts to all of your fitting appointments, and don’t forget to bring both shoes (you’d be surprised how many people forget about that!).

Step 5: Alignment

Your test socket will be attached to the prosthetic components (foot, knee, etc.) that have been selected for you. We will then tailor the prosthesis to your specific needs. This is when we will use advanced alignment tools and techniques to make adjustments which will improve your gait (how you walk) and provide the perfect combination of comfort and stability.

Step 6: Gait Training and “Real World” Testing

Even the most seasoned amputee can benefit from some gait training tips, and we pride ourselves on our attention to this important part of the process. Whether you are a new amputee or have worn a prosthesis for many years, our goal is to make sure you are confident and comfortable while performing all your daily tasks and special activities. We also believe it is important for you to take the prosthesis home or out in the “real world” to ensure you are happy with its performance before finalizing the socket. When you are satisfied with the way the prosthesis fits, we will laminate/finish the socket. This process usually takes 1-2 days.

Step 7: Delivery of Finished Prosthesis

During this appointment we will deliver your new prosthesis along with all the supplies you will need. We will check to make sure the socket is fitting properly and you are walking well. We will also discuss the care and maintenance of your prosthesis at this time.

At any time, please feel free to ask questions! Communication is an important part of the prosthetic fitting process, and we value your input.