Researchers conducted a case study to assess the effects of a perforated prosthetic liner, particularly with respect to wound healing, and found that the liners allowed improvements in residual limb health, while still permitting prosthetic use. The study also concluded that the negative pressure within the perforated liners can aid in wound healing. The open-access study, conducted by researchers from the Blatchford Group, Basingstoke, England, and Endolite North America, Miamisburg, Ohio, was published in the Canadian Prosthetics & Orthotics Journal.
Silicone liners are often worn to provide a close fit and for cushioning, but they create a warm environment that traps sweat against the skin, leading to bacterial growth. To address this problem, researchers tested the ability of perforated silicone liners to move warm air and sweat away from the skin.
The team performed retrospective reviews of three patient files following prescription of perforated silicone prosthetic liners due to excessive sweating or prolonged residual limb health concerns (Silcare Breathe Cushion line used with elevated vacuum suspension or a passive vacuum and the Silcare Breathe Locking liner, both manufactured by Blatchford/Endolite). Photographic records from the files were used to document changes in residual limb condition, and the patients provided subjective feedback regarding their experiences.
Two of the cases were active individuals with amputations with persistent blistering that was irritated during exercise. The third case described a patient with low mobility who had a history of residual limb skin infections. After use of the perforated liner, the participants’ limb conditions healed, and they reported a noticeable reduction in problematic sweating, without limiting their prosthesis use. Two of the patients reported cancelling surgical interventions after substantial improvements with the perforated liner, according to the study.