Hi my name is Lynn De Cola. I have been an amputee for 23 years following a motorcyle accident that claimed my right leg above the knee in 1993.
I received my first conventional socket in 1993 and it’s rigidity had always caused me issues. The funny thing is that it looks exactly like the conventional sockets offered in 2016, with its flexible inner liner and rigid frame. I became a prosthetist in 1994 when my prosthetist invited me to come see the work he did. I instantly fell in love and he hired me as an O&P assistant, which spurred me on to become ABC certified by Florida state. I learned of the Infinite Socket through O&P edge, and believed the technology could prove a valid alternative to the sockets I fit on a daily basis. I reached out to LIM Innovations and was fit with the Infinite Socket at AAOP 2016.
The first thing I instantly noticed was the shock absorption from the dynamic struts was incredible. Whilst wearing my previous socket, I felt every bump in the road reverberating up my femur. Now it feels like I’m walking on a soft sponge. As I wore the Infinite Socket and became familiar with the functionality of it, I came to notice other benefits. One big difference was that the brim does not stick to skin like a proflex type flexible liner. The soft goods feel great around my groin and rather than trap the limb, capture it along the top. This leads to the Infinite Socket being cooler. I live in Florida, which has a humid climate that affects the way I maintain suction in the socket. While sitting out in sun, my residual limb does not feel like it’s baking in socket either, which is of huge benefit.
On a daily basis, I drive to work and noticed over a period of time that I had an increased range of motion in my hip flexors when I sit. This allows me to drive long distances without the need of removing my prosthesis and redonning upon my arrival. I can use the rowing machine at the gym and even bend down to pick up things I drop by accident. Convenient and comfortable has been unheard of since 1993…
Naturally, I slow down at the end of the day, but not from painful sockets, but rather from being tired. My activity level has increased dramatically since being fit with the Infinite Socket, and when I arrive back home, I can use the adjustment feature by loosening the ratchet to free the grip around my residual limb. Whilst keeping the socket on, I can actually feel someone’s hand on my lap, the affection of a cat and it’s little paws stomping around in between my struts.
The socket did however, take some getting used to. At first I wanted to take full advantage of the adjustment, and attempted to over tighten the velcro tensioner because I thought the brim should be as tight as possible so as not to slide off.
Of course the tensioner broke, and I was left to make do with my old socket for one day until a new one was shipped. The turn-around times at LIM’s production facility is impressive and their flexibility to cover damages to the socket is unheard of these days.
On another occasion, my brim failed. The version which I was fit with originally had foam around the top of the brim. Once that had flattened out, I was able to feel the plastic interior digging into my groin. I provided feedback and images to the clinical team, and LIM sent out a brand new model with silicon rope along the top to counteract this issue. GOLDEN!
The adjustability of the Infinite Socket is always going to provide some durability kickbacks with parts as consistently seen on anything that moves. The important thing to remember is the quality of my life has dramatically improved as a result of my adjustable modular prosthetic socket.