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Emergency Orthotic Assistance in Bam Earthquake

                                                 Mostafa Allami

              (Janbazan Medical & Engineering Research Center(JMERC

                                  Medical Devices Research Group

 


 

 Introduction

A major earthquake measuring 6.3 on Richter scale hit Iran on the morning of 26 December 2003 at 05:28centered on the city of Bam, Kerman Province.

We guessed, there were many injured persons because of the housing type and the time of day, which the earthquake had occurred.

This paper highlights some of lessons learnt at our stay there for future.

Method

We constituted an emergency, mobile and self-sufficient O&P clinic, with 15 years experience in making orthoses and prostheses on site for Iranian war victims , and went to there.

Staff: six peoples with Bachelor Degree in O&P and one driver Equipment:1)A bus, we had modified it previously to a mobile O&Pclinic.2) Materials: sheets, foam,etc. 3) Prefabricated orthoses 4) Assistive devices.We arrived to Kerman after 4 days and chose Bahonar hospital as the base of our mission because of it was the closest hospital to Bam, which had orthopedic, and neurosurgery wards.We faced with many injured persons who needed  to some kinds of orthoses.We coordinated with the hospital staff and started planning to cover the most of the wounded.

SO, our team was divided into two groups: one group together with a physician was going to the wards ,visiting, prescribing and measuring the patients. Another group was in the clinic to prepare, deliver and train them. At the end of our mission, we went to Bam and gave O&P services to the victims who stayed in camps.

Results

  1During, our activities in Kerman and Bam we were visiting about500 patients and delivering some  kinds of orthoses

and assistive devises to 182 the patients:

NO.                  Orthoses                 Quant.

1)    Thermoplastic TLSO & LSO     39          

2)     Lumbosacral corset                   11

3)     Philadelphia                               8

4)     Eight bandage                            13

5)     Cock-up splint                           12

6)     Knee immobilizer                      12

7)     Functional knee orthoses           6

8)     Ankle support                            9             

        Total                                           110

 In addition, we were delivering9 manual wheelchairs and 96 forearm crutches to 72 peoples of earthquake patients.

2Our advantages: Our clinic gave orthoses free, at the little time, together with training and with friendship communication. We were a mobile, on site and self-sufficient clinic could attract attention of physicians.

 3Our disadvantages: We reached there late and did not have some orthoses (AFO, Leg Spaika, Mallet finger splint, Body jacket, Knight-Taylor, Halo brace and orthoses for burned limbs).

Conclusions

In this, voluntarily mission we searched about application of emergency orthotic assistance to earthquake patients and 12 peoples of orthotists, orthopedists and neurosurgeons answered a questionnaire.

Based on the replies, although orthotic assistance in earthquake disasters are necessary in rehabilitation stage, they are very important in emergency stage because of there are many traumatic injured victims who need to nonoperative or postoperative orthoses.

Therefore, it is better to have more researches on it.

References

... 1Betram Goldberg, John D.Hsu (1997).Atlas of Orthoses and

(2Internet searches (edu. Format