Testing the efficacy of a prosthetic liner donning Device as an application aid for transtibial amputees
This project seeks to evaluate a novel liner donning device as a potential solution for amputees who have difficulty with prosthetic liner application for various reasons, such as lack of mobility, lack of hand dexterity, and poor balance. These hindrances may discourage amputees from wearing their prosthetic and thus easing this process could be a first step in promoting regular prosthetic use for these individuals. Due to a lack of existing technologies that aid amputees in the application of a prosthetic liner, we created a liner donning device that fits this need. The purpose of this study is to examine whether the liner donning device is a beneficial alternative to the traditional, manual donning method for transtibial amputees. This thesis outlines a human subjects protocol, pending approval with the New Orleans VA Medical Center IRB. This protocol includes quantitative data (measurement of force used in application, time of application, etc) and qualitative data (user feedback on comfort, ease of use, aesthetics, etc) collection to assess whether the liner donning device provides accurate limb liner alignment and whether it is an efficient alternative to the traditional liner donning method. This thesis will present preliminary data that was collected using a mock, foam limb including; peak applied force during use of device, time of application, and accuracy of application. The preliminary data demonstrates that the liner donning device can be used effectively with varying levels of hand dexterity and does not require significant force in order to use. These results display basic efficacy of the liner donning device and provide a baseline for future testing.