Terry’s challenge following amputation: Discomfort and sweating caused by the prosthetic socket
Terry Palmer had her right leg amputated above the knee over ten years ago. She received a conventional socket prosthesis five weeks after amputation. But soon, Terry found wearing the socket both unpleasant and irritating: “It’s so hot that it’s uncomfortable and sweaty, and I was constantly worried about it falling off,” says Terry.
The discomfort of the socket, and time-consuming procedures of putting on and taking off her socket made Terry reluctant to use her artificial leg. “I get home from work around five o’clock. I would take it off and then be on a scooter throughout my house. I didn’t have my leg till I went to take a shower,” she says. “There’s gotta be a better way to do this because this is just so uncomfortable, and I would constantly be thinking and trying to figure out how can we do this better.”
After 10 years of suffering, Terry finally found a permanent solution to her socket problems
Terry first learned about the OPRA™ Implant System when she saw an exciting news story about a veteran who was treated with this unique and osseointegration-based prosthetic technology. The OPRA™ Implant System attaches the prosthetic limb directly to the bone, which eliminates the need for a socket. Terry immediately realized that this could be the solution to her socket related problems. She actively searched for information about the implant system and consulted life care planners about the treatment. Terry’s persistence eventually paid off, and she was finally treated at a leading hospital located in Boston, Massachusetts.
The easily donned and doffed bone-anchored OPRA™ Implant System makes Terry’s artificial leg feel like her own
Compared to traditional socket prostheses, the OPRA™ Implant System offers Terry several important advantages: she can now attach and detach her leg in seconds. Moreover, the osseointegration-based technology allows her to move her prosthesis freely, and wear it all day, every day. “I retired my scooter. It has to be six or seven months now that I’ve not been on a scooter, not once all summer long,” says Terry. “This summer, I was able to play ball with the dogs, take care of my chickens, and do yard work. I wouldn’t be able to do that with a regular prosthetic.”
“My goal is for people to look at me and not know I am an amputee, and realistically, I really achieve that; people who work with me forget that I am an amputee.” As a four-wheeling lover, Terry recently ordered a new four-wheeler. She can’t wait to hop on it and ride through mud and rocks in her 100-acre backyard.
At the end of the interview, we asked Terry what advice she would give to patients with above-knee amputations regarding the OPRA™ Implant System.
“You have to give this a chance. You get your freedom back. You get your respect back. You get the sense of ‘I’m not really an amputee because you can do so much more,’” says Terry. “It’s liberating. That’s the way I’ve always used. It’s liberating to have the ability to just get up and walk around, and I do it so much better, so much easier. My gait is so much smoother.”