The Med Shed

Prosthetist / Orthotist

THE WORKING DAY

You work in the Artificial Limb Unit in Sykes Street, Hull City Centre. Your first patient is an elderly man who has lost some weight and his artificial leg (prosthesis) no longer fits him. You take a cast of his stump to make him a new prosthesis. Your next patient is a young girl who has damaged her prosthesis and needs a repair.

After lunch, you’re back at work to check which patients at Hull Royal need your help. There is a man on the orthopaedic ward who has fractured his spine so you visit him and fit him a collar to hold his neck and head still so he can get out of bed.

You see more patients including a woman who has had a stroke and may need a brace to stop her shoulder from dislocating. Your last patient of the day is a young boy with cerebral palsy who uses leg splints and a frame to walk. They are too small, and his walking has changed so you need to look at his muscles and see what is going on. You notice his muscles are too tight and so give some advice about stretching alongside taking new casts to make some new splints.

DOES THIS SOUND LIKE ME?

You communicate well and are compassionate. You are practical, hands on and like problem solving.

WHAT'S NEXT?

You’ll need a minimum of five GCSEs (or the equivalent), including maths, English and a science. You’ll probably be applying for three A-Level subjects (or the equivalent) at college or sixth form including maths and a science.

After achieving a minimum of three A-Levels (or equivalent level 3 qualifications), you’ll need to apply for an approved three or four-year degree in Prosthetics and Orthotics at university.

Degree apprenticeships in prosthetics and orthotics may be available in some parts of the country and you’ll usually need the same level of GCSEs and A-Levels or equivalent qualifications.

Entry requirements for university courses and degree apprenticeships vary, so it’s vital to check these well in advance.