Most People Cannot Differentiate Between Orthotics and Prosthetics

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Differentiate Between Orthotics and Prosthetics

There are millions of people who don’t know that Medicare orthotics and prosthetics are two completely different medical devices; however, they both share some similar characteristics even though they perform totally different functionalities. Prosthetics are a form of medical equipment that is designed to replace a missing body part while orthotics, on the other hand are designed to support a body part that is present but not able to function independently.  

The type of medical equipment that a patient will require; whether a prosthetic or orthotics will be determined by the condition at hand but medical practitioners are normally best placed to offer proper advice. As a lay person, you want to take your time to learn about the differences in these two types of Medicare medical equipment so that should a need arise for any one of them you will be in a good position to make an informed decision.   

Medicare orthotics comes from the Greek term “ortho” that simply means straighten; these are devices that are used for the correction or support of a person’s movement function in addition to the shape as well as the function of different body parts such as limbs, the torso and other extremities. The most common types of orthotics may include a Medicare back brace, foot and knee brace as well as shoe inserts.

In most cases these devices are used to correct problems that are as a result of injuries or different health conditions. Problems such as scoliosis, which is a curvature of the spine, are normally corrected using orthotic back brace. There are also orthotic shoe inserts that are used to help improve a person’s posture as well as reduce back, foot and leg pain since the force the skeleton into alignment.   

Differentiate Between Orthotics and Prosthetics

There are also other types of orthotics such as halo braces that can be used to immobilize a person’s upper spinal column and head after they have had spinal cord injuries; this is in addition to hip braces and ankle orthotics. Other types of Medicare orthotics include flexible braces for joint such as those of the elbow and the knee; they are mainly used for the prevention injuries during athletic events or any other strenuous physical activities.    

Prosthetics, on the other hand, are specifically designed to replace a lost or missing body part and they have been used since time immemorial. Some examples of the most primitive forms of these devices include the peg leg which is a common feature in movies. There are many modern prosthetics today that are so advanced they can perform quite a number of functions. There are prosthetic arms that can actually sense the micro-movements of the muscles of the remaining part of the damaged limb; they can use such impulses to close a robotic hand thereby allowing a patient to grasp or manipulate objects.  

Orthotics and prosthetics may differ in their functionality but in most cases they are constructed using similar materials.