Ottobock LIMB-itless

LIMB-itless is an event targeted at amputees of all ages and activity levels as well as their carers, helpers and family members. It offers information and advice, on many areas of life as an amputee.

Ottobock Australia held the third instalment of LIMB-itless at Southern Cross University on the Gold Coast during the last weekend of October. LIMB-itless is an event targeted at amputees of all ages and activity levels as well as their carers, helpers and family members. It offers information and advice, on many areas of life as an amputee. This year there were sessions on accessing funding through the new National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) as well as how funding will work for those who are not eligible for the new scheme.

Beyond this, there was something for everyone with sessions running on a huge variety of subjects. Attendees with lower extremity limb difference and their families were treated to presentations by experienced Prosthetists on subjects like ‘Prosthesis Prescription’ and ‘Socket Technology’, as well as a session on foot care by a leading Podiatrist from Queensland Health.

For those interested in technology for upper limb prosthetics there were sessions on the fundamentals, cosmetics as well as the more complex areas of myoelectric components from an experienced Prosthetist. There were presentations on socket comfort and how to set yourself up for success from both a Prosthetist and an Occupational Therapist.

It wasn’t all sitting about listening to lectures. There were fun practical sessions and demonstrations. These covered topics like how your clinical team turn a plaster cast into a prosthetic limb. Those attending were encouraged to be participants and to have-a-go at doing some plasterwork, or constructing a prosthesis and testing theories with a recently released three dimensional analysis tool used clinically to optimise the setup of lower extremity prostheses. Participants were also treated to an expert demonstration showing how both plastic test sockets and carbon fibre definitive sockets are manufactured

After the entertaining Graham Kenyon regaled everyone with a, much edited, version of the story of his life the first day ended with a Cocktails and Canapés event. Here everyone got to let their hair down, swap stories, give and take bad advice and generally have a good time.

The second day began with several practical activities. So many enjoyed the “Walk Better” workshops run by our consultant Physiotherapist that there had to be an extra session run in the afternoon. Attendees with Upper Extremity limb difference were able to attend a workshop with an expert Occupational Therapist.

For those already fit and active, there was a mini GetActive training session run by Paralympic Triathlete Brant Garvey. The sun was shining, and the beachside location initially lulled participants into thinking activities would be leisurly. After some fun cricket activities to warm up, Brant challenged the participants with his now famous core exercise routine. Additionally, there was the ever-popular GetActive golf session and we were very fortunate to have Shane Luke (World Amputee Golf Champion and seven time Australian Amputee Golf Champion), Graham Kenyon and Jay Simpson from First Swing Golf giving help and advice on the day.

Once everyone was back from their morning activities and suitably energised with another delicious morning tea there was the opportunity to hear speakers on topics such as high tech limbs for low and high activity people, pain management, as well as managing the skin and socket interface.

Finally, the inspiring Mandy McKracken closed the event with the moving story of her journey following the sudden onset of an infection resulting in the loss of both her hands and feet.

Ottobock Australia would like to take this opportunity to thank all the volunteers who donated their time and expertise to make this day a reality. Attendee feedback has been extremely positive with 100% of survey responders indicating they would attend another LIMB-itless event in the future.

We look forward to seeing you at LIMB-itless 2019. For more information follow Ottobock Australia on social media and visit our webpage for regular uodates.