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Article
May 10, 1952

USE OF FUNCTIONAL DEVICES FOR DISABILITIES OF THE UPPER EXTREMITY: REPORT OF A CASE

Author Affiliations

Fort Sam Houston, Texas; Washington, D.C.

Chief, Physical Medicine Service, Brooke Army Hospital (Lieutenant Colonel Shields), and Chief, Physical Medicine Consultants Division, Office of the Surgeon General, Department of the Army (Colonel Smith).

JAMA. 1952;149(2):139-141. doi:10.1001/jama.1952.72930190004009a
Abstract

Paralysis or weakness of muscles of the upper extremity is frequently encountered as a result of neuromuscular disorders or trauma. Tightness of fascial planes and deformities are secondary characteristics. These conditions, without bone or joint injury, seldom merit immobilization. Protection, support, and methods designed to assist and promote functional capacity must be considered. The prescription of the device or technique is a responsibility of the physician. The device must be examined when it is completed by the brace mechanic to make certain that it is properly fitted and that its purpose is being accomplished. It follows that the patient must be frequently re-examined to determine whether increased functional capacity necessitates an alteration or discontinuance of the device prescribed.

A physician who accepts responsibility to manage weakness of the upper extremity must recognize the advantages and the limitations of functional aids. There is nothing that will provide a satisfactory substitute for

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