Mobility allows full freedom of movement at all levels; the stump is not forced into a predetermined form; muscular strength can be developed freely; freedom of movement is not restricted by the interfering edges of a prosthesis shaft regardless of whether you are sitting, standing or walking; less feeling of weight; more control over the prosthesis. Strength is directly transported from the bone to the prosthesis enabling its precise handling. Using the ILP puts the hip joint under strain in a natural way and it also counteracts decalcification of the bone. In combination with an improved perception of ground conditions, the ILP faciliates a secure and harmonious walking pattern. The ILP can be attached and removed completely within a few seconds when seated. Possible variations in the volume of the stump have no effect on the prosthesis‘ fit. No skin irritations due to friction, sweat or heat occur, meaning the prosthesis can be worn for longer periods without pain or discomfort and mobility is not restricted at any time.

How does the operation take place? The implantation of the Integral leg prosthesis is carried out in two surgeries which are each performed under general anesthetic. In the first operation, the lower end of the thigh bone is uncovered and the femoral stem is implanted. When the implant is correctly positioned, the sleeve is fitted and the stump is closed up again. In the following four to six to eight weeks, osseointegration that fixes the implant to the bone will take place. In the second operation, the circular skin opening (stoma) is created. The dual cone adapter is connected to the internal femur stem through this stoma. The remaining components of the prosthesis can then be attached externally. Partial weight-bearing and the adjustment of the prosthesis can take place as early as a few days after the second operation. This happens under the supervision of physiotherapists and orthopaedic technicians. Excerpt taken from Newsletter of the Amputees Federation of New Zealand Incorporated July 2012

Mark O’Leary – ITAP Patient

“In my own case, I have been fortunate to be a participant in a clinical trial of a novel method of attaching my prosthetic (Intraosseous Transcutaneous Amputation Prosthesis, ITAP) which involved having a titanium rod surgically implanted in the residual bone of my femur. This protrudes through the skin and allows me to effectively bolt my prosthetic directly to my skeleton. Removing any soft tissue involvement in the prosthetic/human interface has allowed me to extend the use of my conventional prosthetic components far beyond what I was previously capable of doing. I can bolt my leg on in the morning, wear it all day without the usual soreness and pain of a conventional prosthetic fitting, and simply detach my leg prior to going to bed. During the Kilimanjaro trek I almost felt that I was ‘cheating’ relative to the other amputees with conventionally fitted limbs as my stump didn’t get sore or require any looking after during the daily trekking.” Excerpt taken from web article Limb Power Life After Limb Loss

Does watching the paralympics give the impression wearing one is a lot more comfortable than it really is? “Yes, the stump gets rubbed. In hot weather, there’s a lot of sweat and irritation. You get skin rashes and blistering and breakdown of tissue. The  stump shrinks and swells, which changes the fit”. Excerpt taken from web article