People with lower amputated limbs wake in the morning with their prostheses fitting correctly but, by the end of the day, they feel loose and uncomfortable. There is a simple explanation and solution to this problem.
The human bodies’ fluid level fluctuates throughout the day. In the morning, an amputee’s residual limb may be slightly swollen, causing the prosthetic to fit and feel snug. But as the day goes by, the swelling reduces, causing the prosthetic to feel loose.
Alleviate your discomfort by changing the ply, or thickness, of your prosthetic sock.
Ply Prosthetic Socks
Socks come in a variety ply to accommodate for fluid reduction. These socks are measured by the width at the top and the bottom of the sock and also by the overall length. A one ply sock is approximately 2 millimeters while a five ply sock measures approximately 10 millimeters.
The Right Fit & Combination
If your prosthetic socket is flexible, use a lower sock ply for comfort. If your socket is rigid, use a thicker sock ply to cushion the residual limb. If you have a new prosthesis, start with a one 3 ply prosthetic sock and make adjustments as you see fit. If your prosthetic sock feels too tight, try for a thinner sock or reduce the number of socks worn. If your socket feels too loose, try a thicker sock or add an additional sock for support.
Also consider using a combination of different ply socks to get the perfect fit and to increase thickness as your residual limb loses volume. But be cautious: if you have excessive sock ply (more than 10 ply), you can cause instability and unnecessary pressure on your residual limb.
If you cannot find the right combination or thickness and still experience discomfort, contact your prosthetist for assistance.