Why Should A Stump Be Bandaged ?

A stump, also called a “residual limb,” is the limb that remains after an amputation . An amputation is performed when a part of the body will hardly heal or simply will not recover its functionality; and as a consequence generates a risk to the life of the patient. There are various causes that can trigger an amputation such as: diabetic foot , circulatory problems, infections, accidents, cancer, a congenital malformation, among others.

The characteristics of the stump are determined by the conditions of the surgical technique. After the amputation there are measures that must be carried out, to achieve a good recovery and a healthy stump .

The post-operative care of the amputee is of the utmost importance to facilitate healing and recovery, while the scab is being created, gauze should be placed to protect the wound, this bandage should be changed every 3 hours and once the scab has fallen off completely, you can stop using gauze.

Characteristics of a healthy stump .

  • Conical or semi-conical shape.
  • Present a well-nourished skin lining, the skin not being too stretched or too lax.
  • The bony extremities must be sufficiently covered with tissue.
  • Preserve the range of motion of the joints close to the residual limb .
  • Have good circulation.
  • Stump not painful to the touch.
  • Scar without adhesions.

The post- amputation bandage begins once the stitches are removed, it is at this moment that the compression bandage must be performed with the simple purpose that the stump has a good shape, the inflammation decreases and thus avoids deformation in the distal end. of the stump , since, if the bandage is not carried out in patients with amputations above the knee or below the knee , the stump is not optimal for the use of a prosthesis , since the shape must be conical.

On the other hand, there is a bandage technique for the upper limb and a different one for the lower limb . The upper limb amputation levels that require the bandage are: transhumeral amputation, transradial amputation or hand amputation . While at the lower limb levels, the bandage is used for transfemoral amputation and transtibial amputation bandaging .

If the patient decides not to perform the bandage despite the aforementioned importance, the stump will not have the correct volume or shape, therefore, when taking the mold to make the socket , it will fit well for a few days, however , by doing more activity and using the socket , it will cause the stump to reduce what it didn’t do, therefore the new socket won’t fit and you’ll have to buy a new one.

It is important that the bandage is applied once the stump has healed correctly and there are no open stitches, this will help it be done without fear of pulling a stitch or hurting the wound, however, some patients want to do it before and There is no problem, as long as special care is taken in the wound, to avoid any type of injury or infection.

Ideally, the bandage should be applied at least one month before the placement of a leg prosthesis or arm prosthesis , so that the stump has the proper volume and shape and that the prosthetic specialist can perform the socket .

At Mediprax México we are specialists in equipping patients with lower or upper limb amputation. Remember that each patient is different, therefore, it is important to carry out an evaluation in order to provide the prosthesis that provides a real and functional change in life according to your characteristics and needs.


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