About upper and lower limb osseointegration
- Osseointegration (OI) surgery involves the insertion of a metal implant into the bone of your residual limb. Following a rehabilitation process, you will be able to attach a prosthesis directly to the implant.
- OI, while innovative, is a well-established surgical technique that goes back decades.
- OI provides many advantages, including greater control over your prosthesis and greater convenience for donning and doffing.
OI is a surgical procedure that involves inserting a metal implant into the bone of your residual limb. Following the procedure and a period of rehabilitation, you will find it easier to attach your prosthesis directly to this implant than to use a socket.
Although OI technology is advanced, it is not new. In fact, it is a highly trusted and well-understood process. The scientific discoveries underpinning this type of surgery were first made in the 1950s and the first procedures using OI for amputees took place in Sweden in the 1990s.
Advances in OI technology are rapidly changing the game for amputees worldwide. At Relimb™, we are proud to offer the procedure to people who have suffered an upper or lower limb amputation.
The benefits of osseointegration
- Eliminates the problems associated with a standard socket-fitted prosthesis such as rubbing and chafing, sweating, painful skin ulcers, neuroma pain and changes in stump volume.
- Greater control over your prosthesis, with improved stability and increased range of movement of the residual limb.
- Reduced energy requirements when walking.
- Easier to put on and remove your prosthesis.
- Better overall quality of life with osseoperception through the implant. Osseoperception is the feedback patients get from their prosthesis when they walk. In some cases, experienced users are even able to distinguish between walking on grass versus carpet!
As a patient, you are at the heart of everything we do and why we do it. You will receive a plan of treatment, tailored to your specific needs, from the Relimb team, who are experienced leaders in the field of OI and TMR surgery. In addition, you will benefit from having a holistic approach to your care, since Relimb can provide you with all your surgery and prosthetic/rehabilitation support in one seamless package. Our aim is to help you reach the outcomes you have been dreaming of.
I describe my life now as BBA and ABA: before bone-anchor and after bone-anchor. BBA I could only manage to walk for about 30 minutes in my prosthesis and then had to rest for an hour or two because of pain due from the socket rubbing. After bone-anchor, I can walk with my prosthesis for 5-6 miles without stopping. The only reason for stopping is to take in the view. It has been life changing.
Osseointegration has been life changing for me. I no longer dread putting on my leg in the morning and I don’t have to constantly worry about how far I have to walk. I used to be obsessed with planning how to get as close to places as possible by car so that I could minimise the distance I walked, and this took up a lot of headspace. Recently, I walked 12 miles—it was fun, I had no pain and I enjoyed the views of the countryside. The psychological change is just as significant as the physical one. I just don’t need to worry about walking anymore.
Since having osseointegration in 2018, I am now walking with far better posture and with much less pain compared to my experience wearing a socket. I can walk longer distances and generally walk between 3 and 5 miles per day with ease. I particularly like the feeling that the leg is mine again and not an added extra that doesn’t belong to me.