Which Orthotic and Prosthetic Fabrication Material Should You Use?

Overview of all Orfitrans Thermoplastic Products

With so many orthotic and prosthetic fabrication materials to choose from, you may wonder which one is most suitable for your patient’s needs. But we’ve got you covered! Here’s an overview of all Orfitrans thermoplastic products and their most important characteristics.

Orfitrans thermoplastics all pull easily and uniformly and are simple to mold. They have a low shrinkage rate with no risk for excessive pressure or compression; the materials will keep the shape and dimensions determined by the model. But, of course, there’s a lot more to take into account when choosing a suitable material.

The Orfitrans family of products contains many different colors, thicknesses, and physical attributes. It is important to understand the product properties to make appropriate selections for orthotic or prosthetic device fabrication.

 

Overview

Here are specifications about the various Orfitrans products that will help you select the right product for your next O&P device. We provide recommended uses and fabrication techniques, product attributes, as well as colors and thickness options. The orthotic and prosthetic fabrication materials are listed from stiffest to softest in each category of this article.

We divided the materials into the following three categories:

.

Test Sockets

 

Orfitrans PETG

Use: Short-term, supervised, test fittings. Orfitrans PETG can be used for test orthoses.
Recommended fabrication method: Bubble forming
Thermoplastic type: Polyethylene Terephthalate Glycol
Thicknesses: Orfitrans PETG is available in 8 mm, 10 mm, 12 mm, and 15 mm (5/16”, 3/8”, 1/2”, and 19/32”).

Benefits and characteristics: Since Orfitrans PETG is clear in appearance, it lets you verify the suitability of the device prior to final fabrication. The product has superior impact resistance and is exceptionally durable in handling, drilling, sanding, buffing, cutting, and re-forming making its clinical application and adjustment effortless for clinicians. The working properties of Orfitrans PETG include a non-stick exterior.

 

Orfitrans Stiff

Use: Long-term prosthetic test sockets
Recommended fabrication method: Bubble forming
Thermoplastic type: Styrene base
Available thicknesses: 8 mm, 10 mm, 12 mm, and 15 mm (5/16”, 3/8”, 1/2”, and 19/32”)

Benefits and characteristics: This material is virtually indestructible, yet easy to drill into or modify. With a high impact resistance, Orfitrans Stiff will not break, crack, or shatter when dropped. The socket will remain transparent with a slight blue tint that will allow the limb to remain visible. The working properties of Orfitrans Stiff include a non-sticky exterior.

.

Inner Socket Materials

 

Orfitrans Medium Soft

Use: Inner prosthetic sockets and vacuum transtibial and transfemoral sockets.
Recommended fabrication method: Bubble-forming
Color options: Beige and natural (which is a semi-transparent whitish color).
Thermoplastic type: EVA base
Available thicknesses:
– Orfitrans Medium Soft Beige: 6 mm, 8 mm, 10 mm, 12 mm, and 15 mm (15/64”, 5/16”, 3/8”, 1/2”, and 19/32”)
– Orfitrans Medium Soft Natural: 8 mm, 10 mm, 12 mm, and 15 mm (5/16”, 3/8”, 1/2”, and 19/32”)

Benefits and characteristics: These non-stick prosthetic fabrication materials combine enough rigidity to give control and enough flexibility to allow range of motion; they are structurally sound and will not cold flow at thinner areas of the flexible interface. Orfitrans Medium Soft allows for the change or flattening of the limb when sitting; yet the material will maintain its shape without stretching outward and the volume will not change. There is an aesthetic benefit for the user, since Orfitrans Medium Soft has reduced yellowing discolorations.

.

Orfitrans Excel

Use: Inner prosthetic sockets
Recommended fabrication method: Bubble and drape forming
Thermoplastic type: PE Copolymer base (comparable to EVA-based products)
Color options: Black and semi-transparent (almost clear)
Available thicknesses:
– Orfitrans Excel Black: 3 mm, 5 mm, 8 mm, 10 mm, 12 mm, and 15 mm (5/16”, 3/8”, 1/2”, and 19/32”)
– Orfitrans Excel Semi-Transparent: 3 mm, 4 mm, 5 mm, 8 mm, 10 mm, 12 mm and 15 mm (1/8”, 5/32”, 13/64”, 5/16”, 3/8”, 1/2”, and 19/32”)

Benefits and characteristics: Orfitrans Excel is a flexible material that provides a surface finish that is silky and smooth. This thermoplastic has a self-adhesive property and will bond permanently to itself. Correction of shape is possible as this thermoplastic can be reheated and remolded allowing easy relief of pressure points. Orfitrans Excel is 8% lighter than other competitive EVA-type products; this lighter weight makes the product wear more comfortable. The transparency of the semi-transparent color offers observation of anatomy while being worn; it allows monitoring of potential pressure areas; and it allows control to ensure total surface contact. Furthermore, Orfitrans Excel has excellent U.V. stability which means that it has no yellowing, and it is not susceptible to aging under normal storage conditions.

 

Orfitrans Extra Soft

Use: Inner prosthetic sockets (upper and lower extremity)
Recommended fabrication method: Bubble forming
Thermoplastic type: EVA base
Color options: Beige and natural (which is a semi-transparent whitish color)
Available thicknesses:
– Orfitrans Extra Soft Beige: 5 mm, 9 mm, and 12 mm (13/64”, 23/64”, and 1/2”)
– Orfitrans Extra Soft Natural: 9 mm and 12 mm (23/64”, and 1/2”)

 

Benefits and characteristics: Very flexible prosthetic fabrication materials that are extremely smooth with no tacky or sticky feel. Orfitrans Extra Soft offers outstanding patient comfort.

 

Orfitrans Extra Soft Silicone

Use: Inner prosthetic sockets
Recommended fabrication method: Bubble forming
Thermoplastic type: EVA base
Color options: Natural (which is an opaque whitish color; the whitest of all the Orfitrans products)
Available thicknesses: 9 mm and 12 mm (23/64”, and 1/2”)

Benefits and characteristics: Just like its cousin discussed above, Orfitrans Extra Soft Silicone is a very flexible material that is extremely smooth with no tacky or sticky feel and offers an outstanding patient comfort. Thanks to the silicone, this product prevents the need for powder on the inside and it eliminates all the difficulties and inconveniences often experienced in donning and doffing other socket materials.

 

Orfitrans Supra Soft

Use: Inner prosthetic sockets (especially for active patients)
Recommended fabrication method: Bubble forming
Thermoplastic type: EVA base
Color options: Natural (which is a semi-transparent clear product)
Available thicknesses: 8 mm, 10 mm, 12 mm, and 15 mm (5/16”, 3/8”, 1/2”, and 19/32”)

Benefits and characteristics: Orfitrans Supra Soft is an extremely flexible material with a silky-smooth feel. The non-stick material offers outstanding comfort for active patients.

.

Orthotic Materials

 

Orfitrans PETG

Use: Short-term, supervised, test fittings. Orfitrans PETG can be used for test orthoses.
Recommended fabrication method: Bubble forming
Thermoplastic type: Polyethylene Terephthalate Glycol
Thicknesses: Orfitrans PETG is available in 8 mm, 10 mm, 12 mm, and 15 mm (5/16”, 3/8”, 1/2”, and 19/32”).

Benefits and characteristics: Since Orfitrans PETG is clear in appearance, it lets you verify the suitability of the device prior to final fabrication. The product has superior impact resistance and is exceptionally durable in handling, drilling, sanding, buffing, cutting, and re-forming making its clinical application and adjustment effortless for clinicians. The working properties of Orfitrans PETG include a non-stick exterior.

 

Orfitrans Excel

Use: Hand, wrist, and ankle lining orthoses
Recommended fabrication method: Drape forming
Thermoplastic type: PE Copolymer base (comparable to EVA-based products)”
Color options: Black and semi-transparent (almost clear)
Available thicknesses:
– Orfitrans Excel Black: 3 mm, 5 mm, 8 mm, 10 mm, 12 mm, and 15 mm (5/16”, 3/8”, 1/2”, and 19/32”)
– Orfitrans Excel Semi-Transparent: 3 mm, 4 mm, 5 mm, 8 mm, 10 mm, 12 mm and 15 mm (1/8”, 5/32”, 13/64”, 5/16”, 3/8”, 1/2”, and 19/32”)

Benefits and characteristics: In addition to the characteristics of Orfitrans Excel we described earlier, the main benefit for orthotics is that Orfitrans Excel can be drape formed. This is thanks to its self-adhesive properties and ability to bond permanently to itself.

 

Learn more

To learn more about Orfitrans products, visit our Orfit Academy, Orthotic and Prosthetic Institute where we have an overview course relating to all Orfitrans orthotic and prosthetic fabrication materials.

If you have any questions about product selection for your next orthotic or prosthetic device, please feel free to contact us.

 

Written by Amanda Hebert, CPO

Amanda is a Certified Prosthetist Orthotist, certified through the American Board for Certification since 2004.

She started her career in O&P in 1996, when she worked in New England to learn every aspect of an O&P medical device laboratory that was owned by her family. She worked within the family business for eleven years before relocating to North Carolina where she practiced for four more years in the greater Charlotte area.  Following this, Amanda began her work with an O&P device manufacturer where she specialized in education relating to microprocessor knees and feet for eight years.

Today, through the Orfit Academy, Blog writing, and other educational offerings, she expands her O&P outreach to help educate on a global level about Orfit Industries’ wide range of thermoplastic sheets offered in the Orfitrans product line. Amanda has been with the Orfit Industries family since 2020.

 

If you’d like to receive the latest product updates and interesting Orfit news, subscribe to our newsletter:

We've selected some similar articles for you
The Art of Moulding a Prosthetic Socket
How to mould a prosthetic socket using the bubble-forming method
The process of moulding a socket is often seen as an art and requires great skill of a prosthetist. The socket needs to conform perfectly to the patient's stump so that it feels comfortable but still offers the necessary support. Follow along as we take you through all the steps of moulding a prosthetic socket using the bubble-forming method.
Read more
Benefits of Using a Flexible Inner Socket
Fabricating a comfortable and adaptable prosthesis
All amputees need a patient-specific approach when it comes to creating a suitable and supportive prosthetic socket. One component that makes a prosthesis highly patient-adaptable, is a flexible inner socket.
Read more
How to Heat Orfitrans Stiff Thermoplastic Materials
Make the most of Orfitrans Stiff check socket materials
When it comes to moulding a check socket, good preparation is key. In this blog post, we explain the best way to heat Orfitrans Stiff. 
Read more