How Long Does It Take to Get Fitted for an Upper Limb Prosthesis?
by Amber Henson, on Feb 7, 2023
Once your insurance provider has authorized your prosthetic care or you have agreed to pay for it out of pocket, our Arm Dynamics team members schedule a prosthesis fitting that typically takes four or five days (longer for people with a bilateral limb difference). Occasionally, depending upon limb difference level and the type of prosthesis, this can even be shorter – even as short as a single day.
We call this speedy delivery of your definitive prosthesis our Comprehensive Accelerated Fitting Process™.
A definitive prosthesis is the prosthetic device that we expect you to be able to wear for a long time – the one you go home with. This is different from an initial or test prosthesis, which your prosthetist and technician will design and create to fit you perfectly and use as a prototype for the finished product. The initial prosthesis allows us to determine how well the device fits and make any necessary changes to optimize your comfort and function. The initial prosthesis also gives your clinical therapy specialist an opportunity to recommend any changes that will make your final definitive device more functional. You can see the initial (left) versus the definitive prosthesis below:
What made us decide that our patients would experience better outcomes if we fit them in a short period of time? Well, we knew that the faster we were able to fit and teach someone how to use their device, the faster they could regain some arm function and return to their lives. We also knew we’d be able to provide better care if the whole team was allowed to focus on just one patient at a time. Providing an amazing product in such a short timeframe, and having the patient be present and integral to the process, produces a superior final product and allows you to use your prosthesis better and faster.
From our patient Shaholly Ayers (pictured below): “For the expedited fitting, I came in on a Monday, and I think I was fitted and had a prosthesis and everything by Wednesday. It was pretty quick. And from there I had my prosthesis that I could use to work with the therapist on myoelectric hand motions.” Our therapists use the time before the prosthetic fitting to strengthen the residual limb muscles and prepare for using a device. After a prosthesis is fit, they work quickly with their patients, helping them learn how to use their new device.
Getting a prosthetic care claim request approved through your insurance provider may prove to be a weeks or months long process, but that is also a process that our different support teams help you through. Once you’re all set, you already know your clinical team because you’ve met them for your initial consultation, either in-person or via video chat.
Want to get started? Simply contact us and let us know you’re interested in a consultation. We’ll let you know what we need from there. If you have been through this process and would like to tell your peers about your experience, please comment below.
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