State of the Art - October 2009

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State-of-the-Art: Upper-Limb Prosthetics Technology

Feature

Chris Lake While prosthetists and patients eagerly await the results of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Revolutionizing Prosthetics 2009 (RP2009) initiatives, science fiction is meeting science fact right now in today's clinical practice. This article explores some of the upper-limb technologies that are commercially available now or are coming to market very soon. The Cool Connection Who says prostheses can't be cool? Not Bernie Diamond, who sports an iPod-enhanced prosthetic arm when he works out or takes to the ski slopes.

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Motion Control Introduces Utah Hybrid Arm

Online Exclusive

Motion Control Inc. has added the new and exciting Utah Hybrid Arm to our product line, and it is now available. Lighter than a Utah Arm, it incorporates all of the hand control and lock/unlock features of the U3 arm.

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Upper Limb: Kudos and Caveats

Feature

John Billock As major breakthroughs in upper-limb prosthetic technology continue to roll out in today's clinical practice, two specialists in upper-limb prosthetics describe what has most impressed them—and what challenges remain. "The first multi-articulated object-compliant hand [the i-LIMB™] is an astounding advance," says Carl Brenner, CPO, FAAOP, director of prosthetic research for the Michigan Institute for Electronic Limb Development, Livonia. The Otto Bock DynamicArm® elbow and microprocessor control system for transhumeral or higher limb loss/deficiency is the top choice for John Billock, CPO, CPO/L, FAAOP, executive/clinical director, Orthotics & Prosthetics Rehabilitation Engineering Centre Inc.

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Alignment Systems Step Forward

Feature

Jay Martin, CP, uses the Compas system to calibrate Jim Bob Bizzell's alignment. Photograph courtesy of Orthocare Innovations. Any prosthetist will tell you that a successfully fitted prosthesis depends, in part, on achieving the proper alignment.

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Better Business Series: OrthoCare Innovations Is Changing the Game

Feature

Orthocare Innovations: Changing the Game

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Jim Landrum: Doing Things Differently


If Jim Landrum had any doubt he'd be returning to the water sports he loves after losing his left hand and forearm due to a 2007 fireworks accident, his buddies quickly dispelled it. "They told me I could either get in my car and drive over there, or they were going to come get me," says the 34-year-old from Missouri. Searching for a Solution For Landrum, operations manager at Ozark Physical Therapy, Poplar Bluff, Mississippi, recovery from his accident meant getting back on the river—to his favorite fishing spots that were inaccessible by motor boat, and to more challenging white-water adventures.

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PLX-PAD: Stem Cell Treatment May Save Limbs


The use of stem cells is one of the most promising, yet ethically controversial issues in modern medicine. The primordial cells with the potential to become any tissue in the body—including the almost impossible to regenerate nerve, vascular, and ligamentous tissues—have sparked policy debates around the world because one of the most promising human sources for stem cells is blastocysts and embryos—specifically, those obtained after in vitro fertilization and abortions. Many governments, including the U.

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Mary Novotny: Contributor to Humanity


Mary Novotny, RN, MS, is a visionary. For the past 35 years, the founder and former president of the Amputee Coalition of America (ACA) has been changing the landscape of prosthetic care by serving as a tireless leader, advocate, and activist. Novotny with her husband, orthopedic surgeon Ed Jeffries, MD.

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Challenged Athletes Foundation: Changing the World, One Athlete at a Time

Sports

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has. " —Margaret Mead In 1994, a small group of thoughtful, committed triathletes came together to raise money for an injured comrade—famed endurance athlete and amputee Jim MacLaren. Their fundraiser, the first San Diego Triathlon Challenge (SDTC), brought the organizers not only funds, but an education in the financial, social, and technical barriers that many people with physical disabilities face when trying to achieve basic fitness, much less compete in sports.

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On the Road


Just because school is out doesn't mean the learning stops. After an information-filled summer semester, it was time for the summer clinical rotations. During our clinical rotations, we followed a practitioner around full-time for a few weeks—100-plus hours.

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Blake Barlow, CP, LPO, FAAOP


Blake Barlow says he's a believer in "prenatal destiny—the providence that drives my passion for O&P. " Born with proximal focal femoral deficiency (PFFD) in 1960, his path toward an accomplished career in prosthetics was set early on. At the age of two, the Atlanta, Georgia, native received his amputation surgery from Richard King, MD, whom Barlow says "performed surgery on me that is still considered state-of-the-art to this day.

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Billing and Collections Q&A

Got FAQs?

Denials are difficult to identify and time consuming to appeal. "Got FAQs?" is here to help answer your most pressing billing questions. This month's column addresses your questions about consignment closets, billing for CROW boots, modifiers to use when billing for replacement facial prostheses, and more.

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ACA Calls on Supporters to Fight


Rick Castro's daughter was born missing part of her arm below the elbow. He worries about how he will cover the cost of the prosthetic devices she will need as she grows. David Ross lost part of his right hand and his right leg above the knee after he was mugged and thrown in front of a subway train.

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If a Picture Is Worth a Thousand Words…

Viewpoint

What is a video worth? That's what we'd like to find out, but we need your help to do it. The O&P EDGE , in coordination with oandp. com, is launching video streaming capability on The O&P EDGE website and throughout oandp.

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Connecting Machines to the Body


'Bionanoelectronic' technology may help prosthetic devices talk to the body on a molecular level. Neuroprosthetic devices of all kinds, from myoelectric prostheses to cochlear implants, depend on biological interfaces to function. Unfortunately, the juncture between human and machine has always been imperfect, with less than clear communication between nerves and componentry, and, in implanted devices, high risks of device corrosion and other problems.

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