January 12, 2019
Learn about the newest and best technology that we at Horton’s put to use in our assistive orthotics to benefit our Arkansas patients.
In the past, orthotic devices were helpful, but often restrictive. Patients with mobility conditions were relegated to rigid aluminum braces that reduced the range of their gait and did not offer much in the way of increased quality of life. It is only in recent years that technology has caught up to the needs of orthotic patients. Thankfully, modern orthotics now provides the materials and techniques required for custom-made orthotics that fit each patient’s unique needs and lifestyle.
You can see examples of the technology used in orthotics in the evaluation, fabrication, and fitting processes at Horton’s Orthotics and Prosthetics. Today’s orthoses are superior to those of the past in just about every conceivable way. They help patients cut their recovery times to help them stay active and enjoy the things they love doing. Let’s take a look at some specific applications of the cutting-edge technology found at Horton’s.
Evaluation and Assessment
The contemporary orthotics process begins with evaluation and assessment. Your medical history, gait, and body dimensions are as unique as your fingerprints, so a mass-produced, one-size-fits-all orthosis is often not sufficient. Horton’s custom-made orthotics are tailor-made for you and you alone, so comprehensive evaluation and assessment are necessary to ensure both quality and utility. You can consider this the “fitting” for your brand new orthotic.
Your evaluation and assessment will include a physical examination, review of your medical history, consultation with your physician(s), and gait analysis. The physical exam is necessary to evaluate all the nuances of your body configuration, injury details, and medical needs. Our professional team will also consult with your orthopedist or another doctor as needed to ensure we fabricate to correct orthoses for your situation.
Most orthotics patients will also require a gait analysis. This term means an in-depth look at the way you walk. While all humans walk in a similar fashion, your gait is unique to you. The way you walk is influenced by your age, gender, previous injuries, and even preferred type of footwear. We use the latest in camera technology as well as our extensive training to classify your gait. This information is vital in constructing your orthoses.
Next, we will need precise measurements of your legs, ankles, feet, etc. Our technicians use 3D scanners, more traditional foam boxes, and a combination of both to determine these figures. Once we have all the necessary information, we can move on to the fabrication of your orthoses.
The Latest Materials
If you have ever seen old photographs of orthotics patients, you have probably noticed that their braces were almost completely made of metal, with the possible exception of leather straps. Today’s orthoses use modern plastics, foam, carbon graphite, nylon, and other materials that were not available decades ago. The benefits of these materials to our patients include better flexibility, increased versatility, and longer orthosis life.
Our expert technicians take every facet of orthosis construction into account when fabricating your custom-made orthotics. These details include your specific diagnosis, rehabilitation course, and—of course—comfort. We make certain that every component of your orthotics, even the fasteners, and straps, are the best possible design for your needs. Additionally, if you have more than one orthosis, we will take into account how your orthoses interact with each other to ensure the highest level of comfort for you.
Fitting is the last, and arguably most important, step in the custom orthotics process. Just as trying on a pair of shoes is crucial before making a purchase, we will need to ensure your final orthoses fit properly. At Horton’s, we take the time necessary to ensure everything fits just right, and that you are satisfied with your orthoses. If any factor is not perfect, we will employ our technology to modify your orthoses appropriately.
Our support does not end once you leave our Arkansas office, either. We will provide follow-up fittings, care, and expert advice that includes all you need to know about your new orthoses. If this is your first time wearing an orthosis, we will let you know how it should feel, problems you could encounter, and signs that you should call us or schedule a visit. We are always available to help.
Find out more about our groundbreaking custom orthotics. Schedule an appointment with Horton’s Orthotics and Prosthetics today. Just call (501) 683-8889.