(212) 921-7900 Appointment

Medical Equipment Instructions Gotham Footcare

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Crutch Use

Sizing Crutches

Properly Sizing Crutches Illustration

Even if you have already been fitted for crutches, please confirm that your crutch pads and hand grips are set properly at the distance below:

  • Crutch pad distance: The crutch pads (tops of crutches) should be approximately two finger widths (1½" to 2") below the armpits, with the shoulders relaxed.
  • Handgrip: Grab the hand grips so your elbows are slightly bent enough that you can fully extend your elbow when you take a step.
  • Crutch length (top to bottom): The total crutch length should equal the distance from your armpit to about 6" in front of a shoe

Positioning

Properly Positioning Crutches Illustration

Begin in the Tripod Position

The tripod position is the position in which you stand and begin walking when using crutches. To get into the tripod position, place the tips of your crutches about 4" to 6" in front and to the side of each foot as you stand on your weight bearing (good) foot.

Ambulation

Ambulating with crutches requires that you have sufficient upper-body strength to support all your weight with just your arms and shoulders.

  1. Begin in the tripod position, remembering to maintain all your weight onto your weight bearing (good) foot.
  2. Advance both crutches forward.
  3. Move the weight bearing foot/leg forward beyond the crutches.
  4. Advance both crutches and then the affected lower extremity forward.
  5. Repeat Steps 3 and 4.

Managing Chairs with Crutches

  1. Make sure the chair is stable, will not slide or roll, and has both arm and back support.
  2. Stand with the backs of your legs touching the front of the seat.
  3. Grasp the handgrips of both crutches in one hand.
  4. Hold onto both crutches with one hand and the chair arm with the other hand for balance and stability as you lower or raise yourself from the chair.

Managing Stairs without Crutches

The safest way to go up and down stairs is to use your seat, not your crutches.

To go up stairs

  1. Sit on a low step.
  2. Move your crutches upstairs by placing them at the top of the staircase if possible or move them up as you progress up the stairs.
  3. In the seated position, reach behind you with both arms and lift yourself up one step using your arms and weight bearing foot/leg. Repeat this process one step at a time.

To go down stairs

  1. Sit on the top step.
  2. Move your crutches downstairs by sliding them to the lowest possible point on the staircase or move them down as you progress down the stairs.
  3. In the seated position, reach behind you with both arms and lift yourself down one step using your arms and weight bearing foot/leg. Repeat this process one step at a time.

IMPORTANT!

Follow These Rules for Safety and Comfort

  1. Do not look down as you walk! Walk straight ahead as you normally do when you walk.
  2. Do not use crutches if you feel drowsy or dizzy.
  3. Do not walk on slippery surfaces including snowy, icy or rainy conditions.
  4. Do not place any weight on the affected foot unless you are directed otherwise by your doctor.
  5. Do make sure your crutches have rubber tips.
  6. Do wear appropriately fitting low-heel shoes on your weight bearing extremity.
  7. Do position the crutch hand grips correctly as noted above.
  8. Do keep the crutch pads 1½" to 2" below your armpits.
  9. Do call Gotham Footcare at (212) 921-7900 if you have any questions or difficulties.

Night Splints

1

Night Split Application Illustration - Step 1

Place your foot and leg into the night splint. Secure the foot and ankle straps and adjust them for comfort.

2

Night Split Application Illustration - Step 2

Extend knee to check tightness of ankle and foot straps and adjust as needed. If numbness, tingling, or other discomfort is experienced, loosen the straps.

3

Night Split Application Illustration - Step 3

Gradually adjust the dorsiflexion assist straps located on the sides of the boot until you feel a stretch in your plantar fascia and achilles tendon and secure them onto the splint. DO NOT WALK WITH YOUR SPLINT!

Orthotics Instructions

Orthotics Placement Instructions

  1. Remove the insoles that currently reside in your shoes. These inserts will not be inserted back into your shoe, but are used to help trim your custom orthotics if they are longer than your shoe inserts.
  2. Place your custom orthotics on top of your shoe inserts and line up the back/heel portion of both devices. Trace the front end of your custom orthotic from one side to the other.
  3. Trim your custom orthotic with kitchen shears making sure to not cut more than necessary, as your orthotics will slide in your shoes and feel uncomfortable. (Do not place your shoe inserts back into shoes)

Orthotics Use Instructions

Break in your custom orthotics gradually! It usually takes about 2-3 weeks to fully adjust to your inserts. If you are currently experiencing pain, slowly increase the amount of time that you wear them as your symptoms permit.

Day 1

  • You may wear your new orthotic devices for up to 2 hours the first 3 days.
  • It is common to experience mild discomfort when wearing your orthotics at first. A break in period is required.
  • Take your time!

Day 4

  • You may wear the orthotics for 4 hours and continue to do so for 3 days.

Day 6

  • You may wear the orthotics for 6 hours and continue to do so for 3 days.
  • Some patients experience joint pain in various parts of the body after 3-4 hours of wearing the orthotics. If this is the case, do not extend the wearing time and instead cut it back by an hour or two.
  • The symptoms should disappear as your full body adjusts to a new posture.

Day 8

  • You may wear the orthotics for 8 hours.

Day 10

  • You may wear the orthotics all day.

Schedule a follow-up appointment 2 weeks after you have broken in your orthotics.

  • It is possible that you may get irritation in some areas of the feet while breaking in your new orthotics.
  • If irritation presents, stop wearing the orthotics and notify the office at (212) 921-7900. There may need to be minor adjustments made to your custom devices.

Cam Walker Boot

PLACEHOLDER

1

Cam Walker Boot Application Illustration - Step 1

Remove the inner liner from the Cam Walker boot.

2

Cam Walker Boot Application Illustration - Step 2

Open the liner and place the foot inside with the heel fitting comfortably into the back portion of the liner. Secure lower strap across foot and upper strap across leg. Make sure the pump is facing forward.

3

Cam Walker Boot Application Illustration - Step 3

Gently spread side struts of boot and insert lower leg.

4

Cam Walker Boot Application Illustration - Step 4

The ankle should be centered with the foot at 90 degrees.

5

Cam Walker Boot Application Illustration - Step 5

Secure the boot onto the leg with the velcro straps beginning at the foot and moving up the leg.

6

Cam Walker Boot Application Illustration - Step 6

To inflate the air liner press and release.the center air button until the liner provides a comfortable cushion and support. Do not over inflate. To deflate the air liner, press down on the small circular button.

7

Cam Walker Boot Application Illustration - Step 7

To remove, first deflate the air liner and unfasten the boot straps. Unfasten the liner and gently bring foot and ankle out of the boot.

Ankle Brace

Place heel in round opening.

Ankle Brace Application Illustration - Step 1

First secure the lower strap across the foot and then the upper strap across the leg.

Ankle Brace Application Illustration - Step 2

Criss-cross tension straps for a tight, comfortable fit.

Ankle Brace Application Illustration - Step 3

At Gotham Footcare in NYC, we strive at recognizing your individual needs and desired outcomes while formulating an effective and personalized treatment plan with the highest quality care available.

What sets Gotham Footcare apart from other podiatry offices is our dedication to providing you with the education you need to make well-informed decisions regarding your care. Regardless of what your foot and ankle trouble may be, at Gotham Footcare our team will work tirelessly to help you feel better. At Gotham Footcare, we help you put your best foot forward.