New Patient Info: Allcare Orthotic and Prosthetic Services
Welcome to the Allcare Orthotic and Prosthetic Services family. Whether you are about to have your amputation, recently had surgery, or have been living with a limb difference for a long time – we look forward to helping you achieve a renewed independence through mobility with the most personalized prosthetic and orthotic care in the NJ & NY metropolitan area. Below, we discuss what you can expect as a new patient, including answers to FAQs regarding your appointments, prosthetic-specific questions, orthotic-specific questions, and general inquires.
What to Expect
Before Your First Appointment
If you are a post-operative patient or will not be having surgery, the first step in the process of getting an orthotic or prosthetic is to obtain a prescription from your doctor. If you would like assistance with this step, we are happy to help develop a prescription rationale during our initial consultation that you can then present to your physician.
If you have not yet had your operation, we will encourage you to meet with one of our peer visitors and prosthetists pre-surgery. Your prosthetist will do a physical exam and help walk you through what to expect.
Your peer visitor, as an amputee him or herself, can help answer questions, offer encouragement, and talk through your feelings from the perspective of someone who has lived through similar experiences and emotions. This peer visitor will continue to be there for you as much or as little as you’d like – lending an ear, offering guidance, or connecting you to the right people and resources.
Your First Appointment
Your first appointment at Allcare Orthotic and Prosthetic Services involves a functional assessment, where we will examine your affected limb, ask you many questions, and discuss your individual needs and goals.
If you already have a prescription and did not recently have surgery, this initial assessment may also involve taking measurements and casting. If you have recently had surgery, we will discuss things like using a shrinker to reduce swelling, skin care, muscle strengthening exercises, and pain management to help prepare your body for your prosthesis.
Follow Up Appointments
Once you have been measured and cast, your next appointment will involve a fitting of your custom orthotic or prosthetic. As you try out your new device in the office, we will discuss how it works, how it feels, how it should feel, and record any adjustments that need to be made. We will do as many fittings as necessary and will continue to make custom modifications until your device fits you perfectly.
Once the fit of your device is perfected, you will have ongoing appointments with one of our physical or occupational therapists to help train you to use your orthotic or prosthetic. He or she will develop an individualized physical therapy plan that will help recondition your muscles and work with you to relearn activities, gait, balance, and coordination.
What Should I Bring to My First Appointment?
- Your Prescription or Referral (Unless You Need Help with a Prescription Rationale)
- Photo ID
- Insurance Card or Cards
- A List of Questions You May Have
How Quickly Will I Get My Device?
Here at Allcare Orthotic and Prosthetic Services – all casting, molding, fittings, and adjustments are done right in-house. This gives us the unique ability to handcraft your device quickly, typically with a two-week turnaround (granted all insurance approvals are received prior). In certain circumstances, barring any insurance approval issues, we may be able to get it to you sooner.
Will My Orthosis or Prosthesis hurt?
While you may experience some pressure as you get used to your device, it should never cause pain. If you ever feel pain from your prosthetic or orthotic, contact us right away, and we will make all necessary adjustments. We want you to use your device as much as possible, which means making sure it is as comfortable as possible.
What If Something Breaks?
While our devices are built using the strongest and lightest materials possible, sometimes things break. Wear and tear of your device is a natural part of the process – in fact, we love it when the reason for a tune-up or repair is because you have been using your prosthetic or orthotic so much.
We know that quick repairs, tune-ups, and adjustments are vital to your mobility and independence, so contact us as soon as something needs to be addressed, and we will get it back to you ASAP – typically the same day but if not within 1-2 days if parts need to be ordered. We also make house calls in many instances if you cannot make it to one of our five locations.
How Does Allcare Orthotic and Prosthetic Services Ensure the Best Fit Possible?
We start the process by asking you a lot of questions. Rather than telling you what we think you qualify for, we ask you what you want and what your goals are. This is a crucial part of our patient-centered philosophy.
What Factors Weigh Into Finding the Best Device For Me?
- The Location & Level of Amputation or Injury
- Current Physical Abilities
- Your Goals
- Your Hobbies
- Lifestyle and Workstyle
- Personal Aesthetic
How Soon After Surgery Can I Begin the Prosthetic Process?
If you know you are having an amputation surgery, we actually recommend that you begin the process before your surgery. One of our certified peer visitors will walk you through every step of what to expect, and our practitioners will explain the prosthetic process to help put your mind at ease during this difficult time.
How Soon After Surgery Can I Get Fit For a Prosthetic?
The timing of when a patient can start their fittings depends on how quickly the residual limb takes to fully heal. Typically, however, the initial fitting for a prosthetic device can begin anywhere between two to six months after surgery.
How Long Do I Have to Wear My Shrinker?
Ultimately, this depends on your individual circumstances, but on average, most patients find themselves using their shrinker for the first year or more post-amputation. Because the residual limb is still undergoing many changes during this time period, wearing your shrinker regularly throughout the day and night will help keep your limb consistent in size and shape.
Do I Have to Follow a Wearing Schedule?
Yes. A wearing schedule will give you the time needed to adapt to the new forces your device will put on your body. It is important to follow these break-in periods to ensure there are no setbacks throughout your rehabilitation process. Every individual’s break-in period is different, and your practitioner will work closely with you to determine your personal schedule.
Do I Have to Go to Physical Therapy?
Yes, if this is your first prosthetic device. Physical therapy is a vital component of the prosthetic and rehabilitation process. In physical therapy, you will learn how to most optimally use your device so you can regain your prior level of function. At Allcare Orthotic and Prosthetic Services, Michael Sgroi is not only a CPO but also a physical therapist. Plus, all of our clinicians work closely with local physical therapists to ensure everybody receives proper and individualized training.
How Do I Prepare Myself Emotionally?
Openly talking through your feelings with a family member, therapist, or loved one is an integral part of the process. But speaking to someone who has gone through a similar amputation can be one of the best support systems you can build for yourself. Here at Allcare Orthotic and Prosthetic Services, we are happy to assist you with this by introducing you to our limb difference community and connecting you to whatever resources you need. We also offer peer visits, support groups, and, once you have gotten the hang of your prosthetic, a huge adaptive sporting and recreational support system via Team Allcare.
What Is An Orthotic?
An orthotic is a specialized brace or device designed to correct disorders of the limbs or spine by correcting alignment and providing support. These disorders can range from neuromuscular or musculoskeletal to injury or deformities.
How Long Will I Have to Wear It?
In certain circumstances, such as the case of lifelong disorders like Cerebral Palsy, your orthotic is meant to help with alignment and physical comfort throughout your life. In other cases, such as acute sports injuries or surgical recoveries, your orthotic will be worn temporarily until you are fully healed.
What Conditions Can Allcare Orthotic and Prosthetic Services Assist With?
No matter the level of injury, we can create a unique orthotic solution just for you. See here for specifics on many of the conditions we help treat.
Common Orthotic Services We Offer Include:
- Ankle, Knee, and Hip Custom Bracing
- Post-Operative and Trauma Bracing
- Pediatric Custom Orthotics
- Sports Bracing
- Functional Electrical Stimulation (Walk-Aide)
- Fracture Management
- Scoliosis Bracing
- Upper Limb Orthotics
- Foot Orthotics
- Wound Care