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crosemeyer

New Socket

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Hi all.

So I finally got my new suction socket about three weeks ago, and it just seems to be not working out. I am not sure if there is any way I can wear it. Basically, it had put my phantom pain back up to an 11. In addition, there seems to be something off about my stump shape or something--if I walk up stairs, bend down, or do anything that might cause my stump to lengthen, my next several steps are extremely painful. It feels like a "lump" in the muscle--could this be a neuroma? It also seems like to suction works great for walking a long distance, but I am up and down all day, and it always comes loose when I sit, so I have to walk a while before I go back in.

I've never had any of these problems with pin legs. Is this socket type just wrong for me? Anyone have ideas?

Thanks,

Chris

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Hi all.

So I finally got my new suction socket about three weeks ago, and it just seems to be not working out. I am not sure if there is any way I can wear it. Basically, it had put my phantom pain back up to an 11. In addition, there seems to be something off about my stump shape or something--if I walk up stairs, bend down, or do anything that might cause my stump to lengthen, my next several steps are extremely painful. It feels like a "lump" in the muscle--could this be a neuroma? It also seems like to suction works great for walking a long distance, but I am up and down all day, and it always comes loose when I sit, so I have to walk a while before I go back in.

I've never had any of these problems with pin legs. Is this socket type just wrong for me? Anyone have ideas?

Thanks,

Chris

Hi Chris,

I am up and down from a chair, in and out of the car, and up and down from the floor (I work with special needs kids in the school system as a Physical Therapist) and my leg doesn't loose suction. I did have the prosthetist cut down the space behind the knee to allow greater movement. My liner has five rings or gaskets going around it. I know there are some liners with only one gasket. Which one do you have? The socket needs to be in close contact to your entire stump for the system to work. My husband could not wear this system (6 trial sockets). He just could not tolerate total contact due to increased pain along his tibia. Only you can say if this socket is the one for you. All the sockets have positives and negatives so what works best for you is the right one.

Kathryn

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Hi all.

So I finally got my new suction socket about three weeks ago, and it just seems to be not working out. I am not sure if there is any way I can wear it. Basically, it had put my phantom pain back up to an 11. In addition, there seems to be something off about my stump shape or something--if I walk up stairs, bend down, or do anything that might cause my stump to lengthen, my next several steps are extremely painful. It feels like a "lump" in the muscle--could this be a neuroma? It also seems like to suction works great for walking a long distance, but I am up and down all day, and it always comes loose when I sit, so I have to walk a while before I go back in.

I've never had any of these problems with pin legs. Is this socket type just wrong for me? Anyone have ideas?

Thanks,

Chris

Hi Chris,

I am up and down from a chair, in and out of the car, and up and down from the floor (I work with special needs kids in the school system as a Physical Therapist) and my leg doesn't loose suction. I did have the prosthetist cut down the space behind the knee to allow greater movement. My liner has five rings or gaskets going around it. I know there are some liners with only one gasket. Which one do you have? The socket needs to be in close contact to your entire stump for the system to work. My husband could not wear this system (6 trial sockets). He just could not tolerate total contact due to increased pain along his tibia. Only you can say if this socket is the one for you. All the sockets have positives and negatives so what works best for you is the right one.

Kathryn

Hi Kat.

My liner has no gasket, just a regular alpha liner. I wear a sleeve over top to keep air out.

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Hey Chris:

I'm sorry for all your troubles. Are you in a straight suction socket or a vacuum system? Some people, myself included, are just not successful with the vacuum systems. They either pull too much or lose vacuum all the time. It's way too much for me to have to worry about. I shelved it after a test socket. I use the same system that Kitkat describes. It's the 5 seal suction system by Ossur. I've been very pleased with it. It's as easy as the pin system to donn, sometimes easier as there is no pin to line up with the hole. It allows better range of motion in the knee because there is no need for a sleeve. The added plus for me is the fact that it doesn't milk my stump all day like the pin. I was also very comfortable in a suction socket. The only negative for me there was the sleeve. They are so fragile when you're an active person.

The truth is this: There is no single system that will suit all amputees. When the pin system came out, all legmen seemed to want to fit it on their patients. Now the vacuum system is getting all the raves and the legmen seem to want to do the same with it. The premise behind the vacuum makes sense, but if it isn't comfortable it then becomes worthless. In seven years as an amputee I've tried almost all the systems. There are positives and negatives to all of them. You just have to find the one that works the best for you. I'm still looking for the best, but I think I've come pretty close with the 5 seal. I know that I lost the best. LOL

I doubt that you have a neuroma. Those take awhile to form. You might just have a knot in the muscle. I get those on occasion. They are more like a bad cramp. Since you were in a poor fitting socket for some time, it might take a spell for everything to acclimate. Have you tried adding socks? Go back to your legman for some adjustments. It might be something as simple as lowering a trim line.

Good luck.

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Hey Chris:

I'm sorry for all your troubles. Are you in a straight suction socket or a vacuum system? Some people, myself included, are just not successful with the vacuum systems. They either pull too much or lose vacuum all the time. It's way too much for me to have to worry about. I shelved it after a test socket. I use the same system that Kitkat describes. It's the 5 seal suction system by Ossur. I've been very pleased with it. It's as easy as the pin system to donn, sometimes easier as there is no pin to line up with the hole. It allows better range of motion in the knee because there is no need for a sleeve. The added plus for me is the fact that it doesn't milk my stump all day like the pin. I was also very comfortable in a suction socket. The only negative for me there was the sleeve. They are so fragile when you're an active person.

The truth is this: There is no single system that will suit all amputees. When the pin system came out, all legmen seemed to want to fit it on their patients. Now the vacuum system is getting all the raves and the legmen seem to want to do the same with it. The premise behind the vacuum makes sense, but if it isn't comfortable it then becomes worthless. In seven years as an amputee I've tried almost all the systems. There are positives and negatives to all of them. You just have to find the one that works the best for you. I'm still looking for the best, but I think I've come pretty close with the 5 seal. I know that I lost the best. LOL

I doubt that you have a neuroma. Those take awhile to form. You might just have a knot in the muscle. I get those on occasion. They are more like a bad cramp. Since you were in a poor fitting socket for some time, it might take a spell for everything to acclimate. Have you tried adding socks? Go back to your legman for some adjustments. It might be something as simple as lowering a trim line.

Good luck.

Hi Neal!

The setup I have is like a vacuum system, but no pump, just a one-way valve. I think the "phantom" increase I am experiencing seems similar to what you describe--pulling too much. I add socks, this seems to help with the "lump," but seems to increase the constant pain. Also, contrary to what I was led to believe, I seem to be getting more volume change through the day than with my pin leg!

Thanks for the advice.

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Chris- I had a similar problem with pain and a "lump" a couple years ago, and it turned out to be a bone spur about the size of a finger that had grown out the bottom of my stump. I recommend you have a Dr. X ray it, and they need to shoot it from front and side angles. If its not that, you will want to find a good plastic surgeon that does limb and reconstructive work to check the soft tissue. I just had some great work done in the DC area that rearranged nerve endings and muscles, and my phantoms are almost gone now.

I have had both pin and different "suction" sockets. Note, there are true "suction" units, like Neal mentioned, and then there are sockets that use ICEROSS seal type liners that force the air out and the seals form a vacuum that holds the leg on.

There should be no reason that the socket would be any more or less comfortable than a pin system, other than the socket may be a tighter fit. Given that everything inside your leg is good, the tighter fit would be preferred from a stability/mobility standpoint.

Hi all.

So I finally got my new suction socket about three weeks ago, and it just seems to be not working out. I am not sure if there is any way I can wear it. Basically, it had put my phantom pain back up to an 11. In addition, there seems to be something off about my stump shape or something--if I walk up stairs, bend down, or do anything that might cause my stump to lengthen, my next several steps are extremely painful. It feels like a "lump" in the muscle--could this be a neuroma? It also seems like to suction works great for walking a long distance, but I am up and down all day, and it always comes loose when I sit, so I have to walk a while before I go back in.

I've never had any of these problems with pin legs. Is this socket type just wrong for me? Anyone have ideas?

Thanks,

Chris

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Well, more surgery is what I definitely don't want just yet. Took about an eighth of an inch off the back, seems to be helping, I can bend my knee without pulling my stump out. Still get the pain when I need to sock up, though.

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Chris, just a question about the pain on "socking up": are you using only full-length sox? I've found that often all I really need is a small amount of "filling" at the very end of my stump, and if I try pulling on a full-length sock the result is painful. So have you tried cutting down sox to various lengths and seeing if that will remedy the need for snugness without creating pain? It could possibly be a solution.........

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I agree with that Cheryl. Too tight around the knee can result in pain farther down the stump as it can hinder blood flow and/or pinch nerves. I hardly have any full length socks left.

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Its comforting to know i am not the only one who comes up with solutions to problems with my prosthesis. I have lined the inside of my socket with a thin layer of neoprene rubber. I leave a gap where there is a lot of pressure to relieve the stress. I only did this after the leg people tried a number of times to add padding. It always failed so i decided to have a go. I feel guilty because i know my leg people would get mad. I have been told not to make adjustments myself. I know there is a risk that i might injure my stump but i need a Prosthesis that works well.

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