What is orthotics?
Orthotics is specialist field which is involved with the design, production and use of orthoses.
Orthoses are devices which are applied externally to any part of the body to prevent or correct deformity and promote or improve function of the affected area. We commonly prescribe corrective insoles, shoe adaptations, footwear and bracing for the lower limb (legs and feet), upper limb (arms and hands) and the spine.
Who are orthotists?
A clinician that practices orthotics is called an orthotist. They are required to be registered with the Health Professions Council and are professionals with a degree qualification or equivalent in Prosthetics and Orthotics.
The Orthotic Department at Dorset County Hospital consists of Juliet Sturgess, Orthotist and Service Manager; Carolyn Royse, Orthotist; Lauren Reilly, Orthotist and Liz Lafford, Orthotic Administrator. The team provides services to Dorset County Hospital, Weymouth Community Hospital, Dorset Children’s Centre and the Diabetes Centre.
What will happen at my appointment?
You will have been referred to our orthotists by your GP, consultant or other healthcare professional for an assessment. At the appointment the orthotist will need to see the affected limb or area. For example with foot and ankle problems it is useful to come in trousers which can be easily rolled up, shorts or a skirt and a pair of trainers or sensible shoes with a lace, Velcro or buckle fastening. For knee problems it would be useful bring shorts. If you are being assessed for a spinal problem you may be required to remove your shirt or top. You will usually be assessed statically (sat or lay down) and dynamically (stood and/or walking).
When will I receive my orthosis?
We carry a small number of orthoses in stock which can be provided at your initial appointment. Other items may have to be specially ordered or made for you. These items will be provided at a follow up appointment. Your orthotist will discuss this with you.
If you are unable to keep an appointment please ring and let us know on 01305 254408, giving as much notice as possible so that we can re–allocate the appointment slot to someone else. We will be happy to change the appointment if the date or time does not suit you, but please give as much notice as possible.
You can contact the Orthotic Department directly by telephone on 01305 254408.