Rinella Prosthetics & Orthotics - May 2020

1890 Silver Cross Blvd., #255, New Lenox, IL 60451 • 27W130 Roosevelt Road, #2E, Winfield, IL 60190 • 522 Chestnut Street, #1D, Hinsdale, IL 60521

PROSTHETIC FAQ Answers to Your Questions During COVID-19

MAY 2020 RINELLA REPORT The

It’s hard to know all the ins and outs of the world of prosthetics and what to do to best benefit your amputee patient during these times. We know you’re likely very busy, so we thought we’d do our part and put together a simple FAQ to help you through this process. Q: I have a patient who needs a prosthetic limb. How do we get started? A: Usually, one of the first priorities of prosthetic treatment is to control the patient’s edema by applying a shrinker or bandage wrap, and the patient will need to be educated on how to use it. You can use certain tools to make this process easier, and we can help you based on your needs.

–Daniel Rinella If you have any questions or concerns, then you can contact me at the number above. In these uncertain times, it’s more important than ever for us to rally together. Inside, we’ve included some feel-good articles and a puzzle just for fun to share with patients that might feel alone in these isolating times. My whole team of prosthetists are more than happy to help you and the amazing patients that you treat. determine if an insurance company will cover their prosthesis and understand the types of devices and services they cover, so the patient may need to make several phone calls and be an advocate for themselves. The cost of seeing a prosthetist should be covered by a patient’s insurance, since this specialist will continue to work with the patient until they reach a comfortable fit and alignment with their prosthesis. Q: With COVID-19, should my patient still see a prosthetist? A: Your patient’s safety is our absolute highest priority. We don’t want to leave any patients behind, especially those who may be suffering from a painful gait (from not having prosthesis adjustments) or those who may need help to continue athletic activities or essential daily work. Like thousands of medical professionals in the nation, our team is armed to the teeth with gloves, hand disinfectant, alcohol-based cleansers approved by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and more. We are still accepting phone orders — call our office at 815.717.8970 — but if you need an immediate response, please text me at 773.401.1353 and I will call you back at the time you suggest regarding the prosthetic your patient needs.

WE SPECIALIZE IN: • Below Knee, Above Knee, & Upper Extremity Prosthetics • Compression Stockings • AFOs • CAM Walkers • KAFOs • LSOs • LS Corsets

Q: What kind of prosthetic leg does my patient need? A: In many ways, it depends on the patient’s activity level prior to surgery. For example, a patient who was only walking around their home right before their amputation is very different than one who was an Olympic runner. Because each patient had a different activity level, the prosthetic leg for each person will also be different. The doctor and physical therapy team, along with the prosthetist, will designate what’s called a potential K-level for each patient post-surgery. This describes what movement a patient is probably going to achieve in the near future with a prosthetic device. It is all based on potential. The K-level can also change if a patient changes their level of physical activity when they get healthier. Q: How long does it take to get a prosthesis?

• TLSOs • Collars • Helmets • CROW Boots • Hip Abduction Braces

A: It entirely depends on how quickly the residual limb fully heals from surgery. A patient might receive a temporary prosthesis immediately after amputation or within 2–3 weeks. They’ll typically receive the long-term prosthesis once the surgical incision has healed, the swelling has gone down, and the patient’s physical condition has improved. Usually, the first prosthetic fitting will be 1–3 months after surgery, depending on healing. Q: Will insurance cover a new prosthetic leg? A: Prosthetic legs vary widely in price. Patients with different K-levels will need different prosthetic devices, which have different components. Many plans will cover prosthetic devices. It can be confusing for many patients to

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Share this newsletter with the amputees Fu N Fact: JELLYFISH HAVE A PROSTHESIS

THE STORY OF GRANDPA MASON

How a Feral Cat Came to Care for Orphaned Kittens

For nearly all of human existence, we’ve wondered about (and feared!) the darkest depths of the sea. To date, we’ve only explored about 5%-10% of our oceans. Although we’ve theorized about the many kinds of near-supernatural life forms and living conditions that exist in the sea’s deepest reaches, we can now use advances in adaptable and cost-effective technology to find answers. That’s why scientists agree: Humanity’s next step in aquatic exploration is creating bionic jellyfish.

When cats are orphaned as kittens, they don’t get the chance to develop all the skills needed to become successful cats. Just like human children, kittens need older role models too. The most famous cat role model had a rough start in life but became an inspiration for kittens and humans alike. His name was Grandpa Mason, and during the last years of his life, he stepped up and gave love, care, and guidance to the orphaned kittens that lived with him. The Canadian animal rescue group TinyKittens rescued Grandpa Mason in 2016 from a property that was scheduled to be bulldozed. The poor feral tabby was suffering from many health problems, including severe dental issues, a badly injured paw, and advanced kidney disease. Since TinyKittens is a no-kill rescue organization, euthanization was out of the question. Given his health conditions, veterinarians predicted the battle-scarred Grandpa Mason didn’t have long to live, so TinyKittens’ founder, Shelly Roche, took him in and provided him with a comfortable place to sleep, plenty of food, and time to relax in the last months of his life. Grandpa Mason had a hard time adjusting to domestic life and would often shy away from being petted. In an interview with The Dodo, Roche described him as “an elderly gentleman [who] lived his whole life a certain way, and then, all of a sudden, [was] forced to live completely differently.” After Grandpa Mason grew accustomed to his home, Roche took in several foster kittens, and those new roommates completely altered Grandpa Mason’s behavior. Roche expected him to hiss, swat, or growl at the kittens when they invaded his space, but he didn’t. Instead, he allowed them to crawl all over him and appeared to enjoy it when they licked his ear. Suddenly a playful, affectionate, and gentle

Wait — what exactly is a bionic jellyfish? Scientists at Caltech and Standford University are now creating tiny prosthetic ligaments for jellyfish that will allow them to swim faster while using less energy. These ligaments are completely harmless to the sea creatures and allow scientists to gather important data. Why jellyfish? Caltech’s lead researcher John Dabiri says, “We want to take advantage of the fact that jellyfish are everywhere already to make a leap from ship-based [versus ocean-based] measurements, which are limited in number due to their high cost.” Keeping Your Prosth

YOUR PROSTHETIST IS HERE TO HELP!

personality came out of Grandpa Mason as he played with, bathed, taught, and cared for the orphaned kittens that Roche welcomed into her home. Potentially

We know your amputee can have a lot going on in their day — that’s why they may want to keep their prosthesis extra clean, especially after going outside during the COVID-19 crisis. Prosthetic liners, socks, and sockets still require the most cleaning since they’re in direct contact with the limb and are huge magnets for germs. However, now your patient may want to clean the exterior of their prosthetic more often as well. If you’re looking for a place to become a bit more familiar with prosthesis hygiene, then you’ve opened the right newsletter, my friend. First of all, as long as a patient cleans out their liners and washes their hands regularly — as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and World Health Organization recommend — a weekly cleaning of the exterior of their prosthetic should still be fine. Prosthetic cleansers, gentle dishwashing soap, and your own body wash are all effective for cleaning liners. The most important part of cleaning your liner is making sure the cleaner you use doesn’t irritate your skin, which is

due to the kittens’ influence, Grandpa Mason surpassed his prognosis by more than two years. During the last few years of his life, Grandpa Mason passed on important lessons and good manners to the

kittens he looked after and adored, as a true grandfather should. He passed last September, but he spent his last night in his ultimate happy place: snuggling in his bed surrounded by kittens.

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How Caltech and Stanford Are Changing Marine Exploration s in your facility. Really important information! H CAN TOO

Take a Break Have a Laugh! & We can travel to your facility

The prosthetic device functions similarly to a pacemaker by using electrical pulses — but instead of regulating a patient’s heartbeat, the prosthesis controls the rate of a jellyfish’s pulsing motions, which it relies on to propel itself forward. The prosthesis itself is a harmless wooden barb that monitors a jellyfish’s energy levels by tracking its oxygen intake. The research has shown that the prosthetic device helps the jellyfish swim three times faster, without impacting its energy or metabolism. Nicole Xu, a Stanford graduate student and co-researcher, says, “This reveals that jellyfish possess an untapped ability for faster, more efficient swimming. They just don’t usually have a reason to do so.” Now, the next step is finding out an efficient way to direct the jellyfish and equip them with technology that’s capable of tracking ocean temperature, salinity, oxygen levels, and much more. With an army of bionic jellyfish, scientists can finally explore and better understand the depths of the ocean where no one has gone before.

SOLUTION ON PG. 4

hesis Clean in a Crisis why many amputees swear by using body wash. This is health information, for medical advice call our team for a free in-person evaluation. Your patient likely already knows they need to clean their liners and how to do so, but you can give them significant reminders. Patients should remember to turn their liners inside out when they clean them, and back right side out once they’re done. This is important — if the gel/silicone side is exposed while drying, it’ll cause tears and cracks, which will harbor more bacteria. Remember to keep a spare liner around and ready to use, since liners need to dry completely after being cleaned and before being put on again. The best way to clean the socket of the prosthesis is to wipe it down with a damp, soapy cloth, using a gentle soap. After the socket has dried, wipe it down with a paper towel with rubbing alcohol. It’s better to let it dry overnight to give the alcohol time to evaporate. Leather pieces in a prosthetic should be dry and clean at all times, using saddle soap if necessary. As their prosthetist, you should be able to give them specific advice on caring for the mechanical parts of their prosthesis. Remind your patients to always report loud, grating noises as well as any damaged cables or other areas. Stay safe, friends!

Hear From Our Clients! “I HIGHLY RECOMMEND RINELLA ORTHOTICS! I HAD A GREAT EXPERIENCE WORKINGWITH THEM. THEY PERFORM MIRACLES EVERY DAY.” –ELIZABETH S..

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1890 SILVER CROSS BLVD. #255 • NEW LENOX, IL 60451

PRST STD US POSTAGE PAID BOISE, ID PERMIT 411

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THIS NEWSLET TER IS INTENDED TO BE SHARED. PLEASE GIVE THIS TO THE AMPUTEES IN YOUR FACILIT Y. THEY WILL LOVE THE FREE INFORMATION!

QUICK FAQ TO THE PROSTHESIS PROCESS 1 THE BEST GRANDFATHER A KITTEN COULD HAVE FUN FACT: JELLYFISH CAN HAVE A PROSTHESIS TOO KEEPING YOUR PROSTHESIS CLEAN IN A CRISIS 2 TAKE A BREAK & HAVE A LAUGH! 3 3 ENRICHING STAYCATION IDEAS 4

THIS NEWSLETTER IS FOR HEALTH INFORMATION ONLY. ALWAYS CONSULT YOUR DOCTOR FOR MEDICAL ADVICE.

3 WAYS TO REPLACE A CANCELED VACATION

and museums are a great way to accomplish that. If you’re confined to the house, then teach your kids about your own knowledge and interests and encourage them to get creative and make their own contributions, too. Have everyone create art, take photos, or write about their prized possessions. Display these masterpieces around your home and let their creators take you on a tour. Learning more about one another builds meaningful bonds. BRING YOUR TRIP HOME You probably chose your original vacation destination in order to experience new and different cultures and activities. But just because you’re no longer traveling to that location doesn’t mean you can’t experience some of what it has to offer! Research popular local cuisine, activities, and history of the area, then create ways to experience them with your family. Cook a traditional meal, recreate a scenic location through photographs, or share a story about local lore and history. Your changed plans will no longer feel like a missed opportunity. Staying at home doesn’t mean your family can’t have the fun of a vacation. All it takes is a little creativity and innovation to build an experience that will bring your family closer together.

Vacations provide opportunities for families to spend time together in a relaxed environment, get away from the routines of everyday life, and create meaningful memories. If you’ve recently had to cancel a trip but still want to create the experience of a vacation for your family, then a staycation is just what you need. TRANSFORM YOUR BACKYARD When you’re trying to recreate a vacation, the outdoor areas of your home present a variety of possibilities. You can turn a sandbox into a relaxing beach, complete with a kiddie pool “ocean.” If you have trees, then set up a zip line or obstacle course. You can even stimulate summer brains with a scavenger hunt around the backyard with hidden clues in the dirt or bushes. The ultimate prize can be something you would have purchased on your original vacation, like a souvenir you can find online. CREATE A ‘FAMILY MUSEUM’

Many vacations include an educational aspect in order to enrich our understanding of the place we’re visiting,

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