Prosthetic Tech

Prosthetic technicians who are sometimes called “orthotic prosthetic technicians” use various types of tools machinery equipment and computer design programs to create and fit artificial limbs for patients. They also construct and repair prosthetic devices for patients with different types of disorders that hinder their ability to move their limbs. In order to create customized devices they make precise measurements or get the information they need from diagrams or specifications that have been provided. Then they use different types of materials such as plastics or metals to create a model or a mold of the device. When the device is completed they paint it a color that matches the patient’s skin so that the appearance is as lifelike as possible. After the device is finished the prosthetic technician makes sure that the device is in working order and that it is adjusted to fit the patient properly. Prosthetic technicians must have excellent eye-hand coordination and they must have the patience it takes to create devices that will be comfortable and useable. Prosthetic technicians usually need an associate’s degree or a certification from an accredited institution where they successfully complete specific courses to prepare for this career. However some with only high school diplomas are hired and trained by their employers. A background of classes in anatomy chemistry physics mechanics arithmetic and wood shop are helpful in providing a solid background for this career. Even after entering the profession however prosthetic technicians must constantly keep up-to-date on new materials and technology. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics the demand for prosthetic technicians is expected to grow. Salaries for this career vary depending on location type of employer prior work experience and whether they are certified. However the median wage is approximately $15 an hour.

Education Required: High School Diploma & Specialized Training
Avg Salary: $31200
High Salary: $36200
Low Salary: $26200
Tasks: Creates prosthetic limbs.
Tests prosthetic devices to make sure they function properly.
Makes adjustments to prosthetic devices when needed.
Uses a variety of different tools to create devices.
Also Called: Orthotic Prosthetic Technician
Medical Appliance Technician
Prosthetic Limb Technician
Prosthesis Fabricator
Additional Resources: http://www.bestjobdescriptions.com/health-care/orthotic-prosthetic-technician
http://education-portal.com/articles/Prosthetic_Technician_Job_Description_and_Info_for_Students_Considering_a_Career_in_Prosthesis_Technology.html
http://www.exammaterials.com/careers/orthotic-prosthetic-technicians-job-education-skills-duties-earnings-outlook.html