You have been fit with an Ankle Foot Orthosis (AFO) as part of your treatment. Unless otherwise instructed, please use a gradual break in schedule to allow your body to get used to your specific orthosis. Start with two to three hours on your first day. Increase an hour per day as tolerated. Following use, remove your orthosis and inspect your skin. There may be some skin redness from pressure areas. Persistent redness can be a sign of excess pressure. If you experience numbness, tingling, colour change, excessive itching, swelling or if pain develops, stop wearing your orthosis. Contact our office for modifications and do not reapply the orthosis. Continued use may lead to blisters or open sores. Please do not attempt to modify your orthosis yourself.
Your AFO should always be worn with a sock and shoe. The sock must extend past the top of the orthosis. This will help prevent rubbing and absorb perspiration. Low heeled, lace up shoes, such as a walking shoes or sneakers are ideal. The shoe should fit snugly with the orthosis, not allowing the foot to slip inside of it. Never walk on the orthosis without a shoe on. This could cause you to slip and fall or break the orthosis. If you have questions regarding the fit of your shoes, please contact us here at Anderson Orthopedics. If your orthosis has hinges and the hinges start to squeak, feel free to apply some dry lubricant, such as Brace EaseTM, TeflonTM, silicone spray, or PAMTM. All straps should be snug, but not tight. Your orthosis can be cleaned with a wash cloth and mild soapy water. If your orthosis has a removable liner it can be removed and hand washed with a mild detergent, rinsed thoroughly, and air dried. Saddle soap can be used on leather portions. Make certain all soap residue is removed and the orthosis is completely dry before re-applying. A hair dryer set on cool can be used to help dry the orthosis.
Make sure you are comfortable with how to properly put on and take off your orthosis.
Please inspect your orthosis daily for any signs of wear including cracking, loose parts, or decreased effectiveness of the device and call our office as needed. Excessive wear to the soles of your shoes can adversely affect brace function. A yearly check up is recommended.