Orthotics and Prosthetics
(bracing and artificial limbs)
Our Orthotics and Prosthetics Department provides standard, customised or custom designed external supports to people who are injured or need artificial limbs (prostheses). We are one of four public Orthotics and Prosthetics Services in Queensland. Our aim is to help you reach your highest level of function and restore your range of movement to improve your daily mobility.
We offer the following services:
- Provision of Orthoses to support, protect, maintain joint range and to help manage or prevent further injury. Types of orthoses include, but are not restricted to, Custom foot orthoses, spinal and lower limb orthoses and upper limb orthoses
- We assess, design, manufacture, fit and align these orthoses and interim prostheses
- An onsite fabrication workshop. Our team is able to custom make or modify devices to suit your needs
- We are part of the Amputee Clinic within our Physiotherapy department providing an interim limb service post amputation.
How to access this service
To access this service as an outpatient you must reside within the Metro North Hospital and Health Service (MNHHS) catchment area. Your GP or medical practitioner will need to send a referral letter to the hospital.
If there is a waiting list, you will receive a confirmation letter and be advised on what to do next. If there is no waiting list, you will receive an appointment booking letter or we will contact you to arrange a suitable time for your appointment. Referrals from outside the MNHHS catchment area will not be accepted.
Please note, referrals are triaged and appointments will be provided to the most urgent cases first. For non-urgent cases, appointments are usually offered within 3-12 months of the referral.
Prosthetics referrals are managed through the Amputee Clinic held within the Physiotherapy Department.
If you are at risk of diabetic foot complications, you can also access this service through a referral from a podiatrist at a Metro North Community Health Centre.
We also accept referrals from other public hospitals where there is no local service available.
What to bring
- Your Medicare card
- Private health insurance card (if you have one)
- Health Care Card and/or concession card (if you have one)
- Glasses, hearing and mobility aids
- Current orthosis or prosthesis
- A list of current medications (prescription, over the counter and herbal medicine)
- Relevant x-rays, scans or any other test results or reports
- Appropriate footwear if attending a lower limb appointment
- Your appointment letter
- Any special items listed on your letter
- WorkCover claim number (if relevant)
- Snacks, a drink or money to buy refreshments
- Something to read or do while you wait
What to expect
If you need orthotics or prosthetics
If you need foot orthoses, ankle foot orthoses or a shoe raise, please bring footwear you are currently using. Wear loose fitted clothing that can easily be pulled out of the way or close fitted clothing (e.g. bike pants), which can be measured and cast over the top of.
On your first visit
- We will assess and measure you depending on your specific needs.
- If possible, a standard device will be fitted. The device may need adjustment or customising to match your needs.
- You may need a custom made device which means we may need to take a cast (or mould) to build a model of your body.
- The casting and measuring process may require the removal of clothing, so please wear something appropriate, and there is a possibility of the casting materials or markers soiling your clothing.
- We will discuss suitable footwear and / or clothing to bring to your next appointment if required.
For a fitting of a lower limb device
- Please wear a firm fitting solid shoe (as discussed at initial appointment)
- If you need shoe modifications done, bring a couple of pairs along to see if they are suitable.
- We do not provide shoes except in certain circumstances. Shoe modifications will be made to your own shoes.
- Please be aware we do not have shoemakers or cobblers and our ability to assist with shoe work is limited.
- Once your specific needs for footwear modification is known, you may find a local shoe repair business or shoemaker to assist you.
Frequently asked questions
The Orthotics and Prosthetics Service is free to all eligible patients. This includes assessment, casting and measurement, manufacture and fitting as well as reviews.
The time it takes to make your custom device depends on our current case load and availability of parts. If the caseload is average and parts are readily available, you can expect to receive your device within a few weeks.
The availability of your device depends on the supplier having it in stock. Some items that are ordered, may be sourced locally, interstate or overseas creating a longer wait time.
Generally, no. If your device is new or needs to be refitted, you will need to come in for an appointment to make sure it fits properly. If your device is being repaired and does not require refitting, we can usually post it to you.
We don’t provide spare devices. Some items do require extra parts (e.g. washable liners for hygiene purposes) and we can provide these as necessary.
Our service does not sell devices. Some devices are available for purchase from private orthotics and prosthetics providers. Please talk to our staff if you have any concerns.
This depends on the device type and how much you use it. Some last many years while others are disposable short term solutions. In either case, regular cleaning and maintenance will lengthen the lifespan of your device.
If your device breaks, please stop using it and contact us immediately for a review appointment. If you cannot come in for an appointment, someone else can bring the device in for you to have it repaired or you can post it to us. Some repairs can be done straight away or on the same day. Some spare parts are kept onsite or may need to be ordered.
This depends on your device type and its expected lifespan. We recommend you replace the device after a year, when it’s beyond repair or if your device no longer meets your needs. The replacement period for surgical footwear is 18 months.
If you need to replace your device, you will need a referral from your GP or medical practitioner. If you originally saw a hospital specialist and you are no longer having regular appointments at the hospital, we recommend accessing your local Orthotics and Prosthetics Service.
This varies depending on your condition and should be discussed at the time of your appointment with your medical practitioner.
Usually yes, but this varies depending on your condition. Please talk to your doctor or Orthotist as some conditions require wearing the device 24/7.
If your device rubs, gives you a rash or causes an allergy, it is important that you contact us or a qualified orthotist, prosthetist or doctor immediately for a review.
You do not need a referral if your appointment is to repair, adjust or modify your device. A new referral is required when replacing your device.
Please check with your Orthotist or Prosthetist as this depends on the type of device. Do not expose your device to salt water. Fresh water should be ok as long as not saturated or exposed for extended periods of time, however allow time to dry overnight.
You will need to regularly clean your device. Cloth devices should be hand washed and air dried. Do not tumble dry.
Metal and plastic devices should be wiped over daily, especially where they touch the skin.
If you are bringing your device in to be repaired or adjusted, please clean it thoroughly first.
No. There are no reusable parts in the devices we provide and devices cannot be reissued even if you have only worn it once.
Location: Level 2, Dr James Mayne Building
Phone: (07) 3646 8365
Open: Monday-Friday 8.00am-4.00pm
Need help outside hours?
For non-urgent medical issues call 13 HEALTH (13 43 25 84) or visit your GP.
In an emergency call 000.
The Prosthetics and Orthotics Service is available to inpatients and outpatients at the hospital. We also accept referrals from across Metro North Hospital and Health Service and other health services in specific circumstances.
Clients can also be seen at other clinics at Redcliffe Hospital, The Prince Charles Hospital, Bald Hills, Brighton, Toowoomba Hospital and Nambour Hospital.