What do Orthotists and Prosthetists do?

Design, measure, fit, and adapt orthopedic braces, appliances or prostheses, such as limbs or facial parts for patients with disabling conditions.

  • Examine, interview, and measure patients to determine their appliance needs and to identify factors that could affect appliance fit.
  • Construct and fabricate appliances or supervise others constructing the appliances.
  • Fit, test, and evaluate devices on patients, and make adjustments for proper fit, function, and comfort.
  • Repair, rebuild, and modify prosthetic and orthopedic appliances.
  • Make and modify plaster casts of areas that will be fitted with prostheses or orthoses, for use in the device construction process.
  • Select materials and components to be used, based on device design.
  • Show and explain orthopedic and prosthetic appliances to healthcare workers.
  • Update skills and knowledge by attending conferences and seminars.
  • Instruct patients in the use and care of orthoses and prostheses.
  • Confer with physicians to formulate specifications and prescriptions for orthopedic or prosthetic devices.
  • Train and supervise support staff, such as orthopedic and prosthetic assistants and technicians.
  • Design orthopedic and prosthetic devices, based on physicians' prescriptions and examination and measurement of patients.
  • Publish research findings or present them at conferences and seminars.
  • Maintain patients' records.
  • Research new ways to construct and use orthopedic and prosthetic devices.

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