Foot amputations can become necessary due to poor circulation caused by hardening of the arteries. This is a common concern for diabetics and smokers who develop vascular disease. Other causes for amputation are injury due to accidents operating machinery, cancer, tumors, sever burns or frostbite, wounds and infections that won’t heal.
Today partial foot amputations are becoming much more common in an effort to provide better balance and functionality post amputation. This becomes a balancing act between removing enough of the damaged foot and working to keep as much functionality as possible. The primary areas of the foot work together similar to a tripod. The heel, big toe and smaller toes are the three primary areas involved in making the foot function properly. When even a small portion of the foot is missing it can seriously inhibit function.
There are several different types of partial foot amputations. They include, toe amputations, mid-foot amputation, linsfranc amputation and chopart amputation. Infection, ulcers, insufficient soft tissue padding and infection can hinder the successful use of prosthetics after amputation. In some cases post amputation surgery may be a necessary step before a patient is able to successfully use a prosthetic. In order to be fitted for a prosthetic the wound from your amputation must be mostly healed and the stump should no longer be painful to the touch.
There are a variety of prosthetic options available depending on the type of amputation, and the health of the patient. The right prosthetic can help reduce pain and increase function after an amputation. Distortion to the foot caused by partial amputations can cause leg length and balance issues. The body’s effort to compensate for these challenges can cause pain throughout the body. By reestablishing the correct form of the foot with a high quality prosthetic the structure of the body is better aligned and many of these issues are reduced or eliminated.
Some examples of prosthetics used to help patients of partial foot amputations are an insole with a toe-filler, cosmetic silicone prosthesis, and prosthesis with a plastic socket, and a clamshell partial foot prosthesis. The clamshell prosthesis has a removable window that allows the larger end of the amputated limb to move through the lower narrow portion of the artificial limb and then be closed once the limb is in position.
To learn more about prosthetics for partial foot amputations contact one of our professionals at a Michigan Teter Orthotics & Prosthetics. Feel free to click one of the links below to find contact information on one of our many locations:
Alma, Alpena, Big Rapids, Cadillac, Charlotte, Cheboygan, Fremont, Gaylord, Grand Rapids, Grayling, Greenville, Houghton Lake, Kalamazoo, Ludington, Manistee, Mt. Pleasant, Muskegon, Petoskey, Sault Ste. Marie, St. Ignace and Traverse City