Orthotist and Prosthetist Job Description

An orthotist helps people who have lost a limb to use something else. A prosthetist does the same thing for people who cannot use their own limbs.

person in blue long sleeve shirt holding black and white tray

An orthotist and a prosthetist are both medical specialists who help people with disabilities to achieve their best level of function. Orthotists make braces and other types of supports while prosthetists make artificial limbs, such as leg or arm. Both jobs require special skills that take many years to acquire.


The work of an orthotist and prosthetist is challenging. They must be very knowledgeable about anatomy, medicine, and the human body as a whole. In addition to this knowledge, they must have finely honed craftsmanship and excellent hand-eye coordination skills with which to make their braces and other orthotic devices that will help people with disabilities lead more normal lives.


A degree in orthotic and prosthetic medicine is required to become a member of this exciting medical profession. These programs are available at select universities across the United States. Orthotics training takes from four to five years while prosthetics training takes between three and four years depending on the program.


The most common disabilities that orthotists and prosthetists work with include spinal cord injuries, amputations, and cerebral palsy. Many times, these medical professionals are the ones who prescribe therapy or other types of medical treatments in conjunction with their orthotic device fitting.


A very important skill for an orthotist is being able to meet the needs of his or her patients. This means that the orthotist must be willing to work with insurance companies and government agencies to get the patient the equipment they need, even if it is not covered by their particular insurance plan. Keeping up with changes in technology is also extremely important.


A career as an orthotist or prosthetist can be very rewarding. When a new patient receives his or her custom-made support, they know that it was designed just for them and will help them to do things that they were previously unable to do.

Statistics on Orthotists and Prosthetists

  • Employment of orthotists and prosthetists is projected to grow 17 percent from 2019 to 2029, much faster than the average for all occupations. (bls.gov)
  • The lowest 10 percent earned less than $41,790, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $110,130. (bls.gov)
  • Total, all occupations Employment of orthotists and prosthetists is projected to grow 17 percent from 2019 to 2029, much faster than the average for all occupations. (bls.gov)

Articles On Orthotists and Prosthetists


Orthotists and Prosthetists: Occupational Outlook Handbook: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Orthotists and prosthetists design and fabricate medical supportive devices and measure and fit patients for them. (bls.gov)


Orthotist and Prosthetist

An orthotist makes and fits braces and splints for patients who need added support for body parts that have been weakened by injury or disease. A prosthetist makes and fits artificial limbs for patients with disabilities. (hopkinsmedicine.org)


Orthotist and Prosthetist

Health care workers who specialize in orthotics and prosthetics (O&P) help these patients regain their mobility by fitting them with artificial limbs. (explorehealthcareers.org)


Orthotist and Prosthetist  

"Orthotics" is the branch of medicine that works with prescribing, making and managing braces or orthoses; "prosthetics" is... (money.usnews.com)


What does an orthotist and prosthetist do? - CareerExplorer

Accidents, injuries, birth defects and disease are some of the many reasons why people lose limbs or suffer orthopedic difficulties. Orthotists and prosthetists help their patients regain mobility by fitting them with orthopedic braces and artificial limbs. (careerexplorer.com)


Today's Big Q: What is the difference between an orthotist and prosthetist?

 Depending on how familiar you are with prosthetic care and the health care professionals dedicated to ensuring you have the level of mobility you desire, you may have seen a number of designations or titles like CP, CPO, or CO and found yourself wondering exactly what all that means. Or maybe you’re... (premierprosthetic.com)


Orthotist & Prosthetist (abcop.org)


How to Become an Orthotist or Prosthetist

Considering a career in the healthcare industry? Learn about all of the steps required to become an Orthotist or Prosthetist right here! (hospitalcareers.com)


How to Become a Orthotist & Prosthetist

Learn all you need to know how to become an orthotist or prosthetist: What is this career like? What skills are needed? What is the pay? What education? (careergirls.org)


American Academy of Orthotists and Prosthetists (oandp.org)


Becoming a Prosthetist or Orthotist - Education, Career Outlook & Salary

 Check out this prosthetist (orthotist) career overview, including job duties, top programs, licensure requirements, and career outlook. (healthcaredegree.com)

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