How Liners Work
Liners play an important role in the comfort and health for prosthetic leg users. They fit over your residual limb and go between your limb and the socket (the socket is the shell that encases your limb and connects you to your prosthesis). If you use either a vacuum or a suction suspension system, you’ll also need a sealing sleeve.
The liner is a protective cover made of a flexible, cushioning material. Worn over your residual limb, it reduces movement and chafing between the skin and the socket. Liners are designed with specific characteristics to work with different suspension systems.
Selecting the right liner helps ensure that your prosthesis fits well and is comfortable to wear.
Frequently Asked Questions
Check whether the residual limb and inside of the liner are dry before donning the liner. Then, please turn the liner inside out as far as possible and hold it so that the bulge at the lower end (cap) is facing you. Place this bulge at the end of your residual limb and roll the liner up evenly and carefully. You can then don the residual limb sock.
Avoid displacing soft tissue and forming wrinkles or air pockets. Do not pull on the edge of the liner or damage the surface with sharp fingernails or other sharp objects.
The liner is donned just like a liner without a pin. However, please note: If there is a pin, it must point in the direction of the lengthwise axis of the residual limb. For better alignment, use markings that you and your Prosthetist have determined together for orientation. When you then don the residual limb sock, it must be pulled on in such a way that the pin remains free. The pin is pulled through the hole at the lower end of the sock.
Liners without a textile cover have a smooth exterior coating to make donning easier. For silicone liners (Skeo product range), you can also use a donning spray; for polyurethane liners (Uneo product range), there are special lubricating creams that you can apply. Please do not use any powder.
The liner is simply rolled down. Please ensure that the edge of the liner does not roll up into a bulge that compresses the tissue.
The liner should be cleaned after every use, at least once daily. Turn the liner inside out and wash it under lukewarm water with the special Derma Clean neutral cleaning lotion. Then rinse it thoroughly and dry the inside with a lint-free towel. Afterwards, turn the liner right side out again and clean the outside as well under running water or with a damp cloth.
Please note: Do not put the liner in the washing machine or dryer. Use only your hands and no other utensils to wash the liner. Do not use any soaps with scented or dye additives or any antibacterial cleaning agents containing alcohol.
Allow your liner to dry on the liner drying stand so that it keeps its shape. The stand is available in two sizes for thigh and lower leg liners. Please do not place your liner on a heater or in the sun to dry.
You can prevent pressure points and abrasion with proper skin care. Mild cleansing: Use the special cleaning lotion to cleanse your skin. Simply spray it on, massage it into the skin, then rinse it off well and dry your skin.
Help for irritated skin: Apply a special basic skincare product in the evening after cleaning. It moisturises and soothes irritated skin, improves circulation and supports regeneration and cell growth.
Protection: If you wear a silicone liner (Skeo product range), you can rub a drop of the special skin protection onto your skin before putting the liner on. This protects the skin, has an antibacterial effect, and prevents excessive perspiration and odour formation.
Perspiration may increase during the first few weeks in particular. You should therefore clean the liner several times a day; we also recommend having a replacement liner close to hand. If these measures do not lead to improvement, ask your Prosthetist for advice. There may be various reasons – from a poor liner fit to the wrong type of liner material.
Red stripes can appear with silicone liners, particularly in areas where the liner moves a lot on the skin, e.g. on the kneecap or at the edge of the liner. Please contact your Prosthetist, who will work with you to find a solution.
The Skinguard antibacterial additive protects the liner from bacteria and the resulting unpleasant odours. Skinguard supports hygiene, which cannot be achieved just by washing the liner daily. However, Skinguard is not a substitute for daily care. Daily cleaning is the only way to remove grease and oil, for example.
Steam sterilisers are suitable only for cleaning silicone liners, and thus naturally for Ottobock’s Skeo products as well. However, in order to provide a customised fitting that meets your specific needs, we use other materials for some of our products, such as the Caleo and Uneo liners. These liners are not suitable for cleaning in steam sterilisers.