• Monthly Archives: April 2011

Cable replacement [product tip]

While I was replacing my cable sheath / cable housing I also decided it was time to get independent in terms of customizing my own cables. I cannot run this prosthetic setup and not be increasingly independent when it comes to repairs. At least, as long as the prosthetists prefer to be occasionally available and not on weekends or holidays.

So I was using the cable sheaths of Shimano.

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Cable sheath crap / cable damage [yet again]

With increasing performance and experience comes increasing proficiency in repairing my arm. Obviously, my orthopedic technician did not listen to me as I had told him numerous times to cut the cable sheath using special equipment.

This results in the cable sheath perforating and tearing up a t-shirt.

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Lawsuit against a prosthetic part manufacturer [rumor]

Word of mouth has it, that a relatively large prosthetic part manufacturer will have to face a lawsuit. An amputee who obviously was met with legally¬†unacceptable¬†issues now appears to strike back. It’s a rumor though, so we’ll keep the ball low.

But that is somewhat unheard of. Why?

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Learning from the past I – Muirhead Little [literature review]

It appears that today and in these days, nowadays and in our modern times, below elbow amputation is very rare and while no ergotherapist, physiotherapist, orthopedic surgeon, dermatologist or psychiatrist will see an arm amputee in practice in thirty years here, the “rare disease” community also (!) fails to acknowledge the fact that a realistic incidence estimate of below elbow amputation of around 1/50’000 entails the exact same consequences that other rare diseases and orphan drugs entail.

Yet there are miles to go before we sleep.

In the olden days, arms were removed more often, and knowhow was generated and documented by people that may not have had as much gadgetry and immediate networking opportunity as nowadays but who were just as clever, curious and differentiated as one would ever wish.

I now will type up some short summary points of a handbook published after World War I by Muirhead Little [1].

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Ancient Roman hand estimated 0-400 AD [archeology musing]

This artifact published on eBay [link] is advertised as an extremely rare authentic ancient Roman bronze prosthetic hand dated 0-400 AD. It is described to contain a fabulous multipurpose style with three fingers (each “very different” from the other), a twisted engraved design and beautiful dark green patina. It is described to be “in excellent condition”. Apparently it is just 40mm in length and it is alleged to have been found in Europe. As the text says further, ancient soldiers would bury their valuable treasures before a big battle hoping to return later. The items they didn’t bury were often lost on the battlefield. Unfortunately many soldiers were slaughtered, but they left behind many treasures for modern man to find.

Looking at the items, I wondered whether they could have been some kitchen utensil (stirring a soup with that could have been effective) or an instrument for gutting an animal (at that time, one would personally go hunt rather than buy meat from another person), of simply something different altogether.

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Cosmetic versus functional prosthetic arms [comparison of activities]

Cosmetic arms aren’t as non-functional as you believe

The key issue for this article are these:

  • People frequently associate ‘cosmetic’ or ‘passive’ arms with ‘no action.
  • People frequently associate ‘myoelectric arms’ with most action and function.
  • Whereas body powered arms are associated with outdated functionality that is considered crude.

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