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AFOs – A Down To Earth Guide on Ankle Foot Orthoses and Orthopedic Braces – Part 7

How Long Do I Wear The AFO For?

Usually AFOs are to be worn when a person is sitting or standing and/or walking. Typically, people do not wear a traditional AFO while they are in bed, because these brace are typically used for walking. In terms of how long wear the brace, for long term usage, it might be best to talk with your physician about this. Many patient’s need to use an ankle foot orthosis indefinitely depending on the state of their diagnosis while others can discard them after a short time.

Take Home Points For Medical Professionals Ordering a Brace

Many times, an orthotist will get a script from a physician that will say “Leg Brace”, “Walking boot” or “AFO Brace”. Although, this gets the orthotist’s mind started in the right direction it is actually still quite a vague request. As the ordering individual, you might know exactly what you want for the patient, but it is best to use the right terms when ordering an orthosis. If you use unrecognized terminology, you are just asking for the orthotist to call you for clarification. Moreover, using the term “AFO brace” is a misnomer as well. The medical term “orthosis” means brace, therefore, when a doctor or APN requests an “AFO Brace” this is actually a redundant statement. As a result, this phrase alone (AFO Brace) may trigger a phone call from your local orthotist. Why? Because you are in effect requesting an “ankle foot brace brace”. We mean all of this in a positive sense and hope that it helps you in your future when ordering these braces for your patients.

Other Braces For The Foot & Ankle – Very Important!

The Difference Between Traditional AFOs & PRAFOs – Medical Professionals, Please Read This Carefully

What Are PRAFOs?

There are other braces for the ankle and foot that exist, which are referred to as PRAFOs. Yes, the PRAFO acronym ends in AFO, but traditional AFOs and PRAFOs are very different. The acronym PRAFO stands for “Pressure Relief Ankle Foot Orthosis”. PRAFOs are typically used for people that are not walking currently. A traditional AFO is meant for someone that is ambulating. Very big difference! – The patients who use a PRAFO are typically in bed or in a wheel chair. Although many PRAFOs might have tread on the bottom of them, this is meant for a quick transfer from a bed to a wheel chair, or some movement of this nature. PRAFOs are typically not thought of as a brace that patient’s walk in.

Note: This information is health based. Remember that each bracing scenario is different, so if you need medical advice regarding braces then speak with your local, licensed orthotist.

Source by Daniel Rinella

AFOs – A Down To Earth Guide on Ankle Foot Orthoses and Orthopedic Braces – Part 7
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