Background and aim: The prosthetic options for higher level amputees are limited and costly. Advancements in computer-aided design programs and three-dimensional printing offer the possibility of designing and manufacturing transitional prostheses at very low cost. The aim of this project was to describe an inexpensive three-dimensional printed mechanical shoulder prosthesis to assist a pre-selected subject in performing bi-manual activities. Technique: The main function of the body-powered, manually adjusted three-dimensional printed shoulder prosthesis is to provide a cost-effective, highly customized transitional device to individuals with congenital or acquired forequarter amputations. Discussion: After testing the prototype on a young research participant, a partial correction of the patient’s spinal deviation was noted due to the counterweight of the device. The patient’s family also reported improved balance and performance of some bimanual activities after 2 weeks of using the device. Limitations of the design include low grip strength and low durability. Clinical relevance: The prosthetic options for higher level amputees are limited and costly. The low-cost three-dimensional printed shoulder prosthesis described in this study can be used as a transitional device in preparation for a more sophisticated shoulder prosthesis.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Health Professions (miscellaneous)