Using mechanical testing to assess the effect of lower-limb prosthetic socket texturing on longitudinal suspension

Julia Quinlan, Jessica Yohay, Vasanth Subramanian, Brad Poziembo, Stefania Fatone, Yih-Kuen Jan
2020 PLoS ONE  
To function effectively, a lower limb prosthetic socket must remain securely coupled to the residual limb during walking, running and other activities of daily living; this coupling is referred to as suspension. When this coupling is insufficient longitudinal pistoning of the socket relative to the residual limb occurs. Increasing friction of the socket/liner interface may improve socket suspension and textured sockets may be fabricated relatively easily with 3D printing. The aim of this study
more » ... aim of this study was to investigate longitudinal displacement of sockets with different types of textures under two suspension conditions: passive suction and active vacuum. In order to do this, we developed a mock residual limb and mechanical testing protocol. Prosthetic sockets, 14 textured sockets and an Original Squirt-Shape (OSS) Socket, were fabricated from polypropylene copolymer using the Squirt-Shape™ 3D Printer and compared to a smooth socket thermoformed from polypropylene copolymer. Sockets were mounted onto a dual durometer mock residual limb and subjected to four levels of distraction forces (100 N, 250 N, 500 N and 650 N) using a hydraulic material testing system. There was a statistically significant three-way interaction between suspension, force level and texture (p < 0.0005). Longitudinal displacements between textured and reference sockets, for all force levels and both suspension conditions, were significantly different (p < 0.0005). Using these newly developed mechanical testing protocols, it was demonstrated that texturing of polypropylene copolymer sockets fabricated using Squirt-Shape significantly decreased longitudinal displacements compared to a smooth socket. However, none of the novel textured sockets significantly reduced longitudinal displacement compared to the OSS socket under passive suction suspension.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0237841 pmid:32813733 fatcat:qe4tlh323nbn3finf3pvlk7iga