What we do
The Orthotic Department provides a wide range of orthoses for all parts of the body. An orthosis is an external device that is used to correct, accommodate or maintain good positioning of bones and joints by helping to rest, protect or support you. This may help your mobility and function or in some cases will be used to stop movement if this is required as part of your treatment.
There are orthoses for all parts of the body such as:
- Prescribed footwear
- Foot supports and moulded insoles
- Callipers and leg braces
- Head, neck, and spinal orthoses.
- Wigs for temporary or permanent hair loss from chemotherapy or alopecia
If you would like to know more about Orthotics or are interested in a career as an Orthotist you can visit the British Association of Orthotists and Prosthetists for more information.
Orthotics outpatient service
The majority of people will be seen in the orthotic clinics where they are allocated an appointment time and will see the orthotist who will assess what kind of orthosis would be the appropriate treatment, measure and order the orthosis. Once it has been made you will be required to attend a fitting appointment.
Access into Orthotics is by referral only.
What might happen at your first appointment?
• After the orthotist has examined you, he/she will discuss your treatment options with you.
• You may need to undress for the assessment and measurement, or plaster moulds may be taken, please wear loose clothing and avoid wearing tights.
• If you wish, you may bring a relative or friend into the appointment with you.
• A small range of orthoses are kept at the hospital. We may give you one of these at your first appointment.
• Most orthoses have to be made specifically for you, one or more further appointments will be arranged to make sure that it fits properly once it arrives.
What happens after the appointment?
Where a made to measure orthosis is needed this will be ordered, it can take up to 6 weeks for the factory to make what you need. When it is ready it will be sent back to the orthotic department and you will be asked to come for a fitting appointment.
Footwear will be sent back partially completed for you to try them on to make sure they fit you, they will be then sent back to the factory to be finished.
The orthotist will check that the orthosis fits you properly. Adjustments may need to made, where this is the case, the orthotic device/footwear will be sent back to factory for changes to be made.
When the orthosis has been finished you may need a supply appointment where your finished orthosis will be given to you and the orthotist will show you how to use it and look after it.
You may need a second pair of shoes or orthoses, these will be ordered for you once you are sure that the first pair fit you ok, these are ordered from the same measurements as the first pair.
Wig clinics are held at both Burnley General Teaching Hospital and Royal Blackburn Teaching Hospital however you can choose to attend a selection of specialist salons which is recommended as you can have longer appointment times and a wider selection of wigs.
East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust has the right to set its own allowance as follows :
Oncology patients : 1 x Wig per referral from the consultant (this may be increased depending on the consultants request)
Dermatology patients: 2 x Acrylic wigs per year set allowance
Please note: Oncology patients wigs have no prescription charge.
Dermatology patients have a prescription charge per wig unless they are exempt (proof of exemption will be required)
Prescription charges for Wigs can be found on the NHS Choices website.
How to access the service
Orthotic services are accessed by referrals from health professionals
Where to find us
Contact details of the departments are:
Rehab, level 1, area 7
Burnley General Teaching Hospital
Royal Blackburn Teaching Hospital
Outpatient clinics are run at:
Royal Blackburn Teaching Hospital - Monday to Friday 8.30am to 4pm
Burnley General Teaching Hospital - Monday to Friday 8.30am to 4pm
Accrington Victoria Hospital - Wednesday 8.30am to 4pm
Wig clinics run at both Burnley General and Royal Blackburn Teaching Hospitals once a month.