New Device – Ulcer Healing Orthosis(R) – Aids in Preventing Diabetic Amputations
LOMBARD, Ill., April 26 /PRNewswire/ — With over ten million diabetics in the U.S. alone and approximately 150,000 amputations performed yearly, inventor and American board-certified prosthetist John E. Rooney developed a custom-made ankle-foot orthosis with the trade name Ulcer Healing Orthosis(R) or UHO(R). The U.S. patented device helps to support the lower leg and foot, reducing mechanical stress on the bottom of the ulcerated foot. This allows blood flow to the ulceration, encouraging healing to continue while walking.
The current standard of care is for the diabetic to stay off there foot and allow healing to occur; however, many patients cannot stay off their feet and must walk, damaging the unprotected foot and causing further ulceration, which in many cases leads to infection and amputation.
Rooney states that not every patient is a candidate for the Ulcer Healing Orthosis(R) and that the patient’s doctor should discuss the option of the UHO(R) with the patient and determine if it’s a possible option. Many foot ulcerations can be treated with walking boots or special diabetic shoes with custom-made inserts. “The patient that has a non-healing wound of 8 weeks or more may benefit from the UHO(R), and a wound care therapist and doctor evaluation are all considered in a treatment plan for the individual diabetic patient,” Rooney says.
“The new device is very successful when the patient follows their doctor’s instructions and is compliant with their treatment plan,” Rooney states. “Sometimes patients will not use the device and will further damage their foot, or not properly care for the wound, causing further complications. Patients are sometimes unable to see their foot wound, or have dexterity problems that doesn’t allow them to reach the wound, or they don’t have assistance at home with care; these patients are most at risk.”
Rooney explains that patients who follow the instructions concerning their foot care, and use the Ulcer Healing Orthosis(R), have about a 83% chance of healing and remaining healed. This is a great relief to the patient and their family members. It reduces many costs associated with wound care, including loss of employment for many patients. The Medicare DMEOPS policy group is currently reviewing the UHO(R) and, if accepted as a covered device, possible reimbursement will be made available to patients. Rooney hopes that this will occur so thousands of diabetics who are at risk of amputation will have another healthcare option for their doctor’s treatment plan.
SOURCE John Rooney