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Prosthetic Sock FAQ

1.  What is a stump sock?
A wool, cotton or man-made material sock worn over the residual limb designed to provide cushion and help manage size fluctuations.

What else can stump socks provide?
Stump socks, sometimes called prosthetic socks, can be used by amputees to provide a more comfortable prosthetic fit, reduce friction, absorb perspiration by "wicking" moisture away from the skin and in some cases reduce discomfort associated with phantom pain. Managing perspiration will indirectly prevent friction related blisters the incidence of bacterial infections and common skin complaints. Some above knee amputees (AK) wear prosthetic socks in combination with stump sheaths to get the best possible fit.

Relate Article: How many sheaths should I wear at a time?

2.  What fibers are used to knit stump socks?
Socks are available in various materials:

  • Wool - soft, full and absorbent. Now available in shrink-controlled and machine-washable yarn. 
  • Cotton - easy to care for, can be bleached. Does not wick moisture away from the skin as well as wool.
  • Other Materials - other fabrics offer other qualities, some are - nylon for strength, acrylic for softness, polyester for resiliency, rayon for absorbency and Lycra spandex for elasticity.

Relate Article: How many sheaths should I wear at a time?

3.  How do I wash my stump socks?
Prosthetic socks need to be washed every day - you may need several socks of different thicknesses throughout the day if your limb changes in volume. Some prosthetic socks can be machine-washed but others need to be washed by hand. Here are a few tips:

  • Make sure all soap is rinsed out to avoid irritation.
  • Do not subject socks to excessive heat.
  • To maintain the shape you can place a ball (same size as the sock) in the end of the sock.

Relate Article:  How-to care for your prosthetic socks.

4.  How often will I need to change my stump sock?
You could be adjusting your socks several times a day, but it all depends on the fluid changes in your leg. When there are fluid changes, you will either need to add or subtract a prosthetic sock or use a different ply sock. Fluid changes are caused by excess heat in summer weather, forgetting to wear you stump shrinker at night, letting your leg hang down without your artificial leg and extreme changes in your normal amount of daily activity. In general, socks should be changed everyday or as soon as they become moist with perspiration.

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