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How To Become A Medical Appliance Technician Building Prosthetics

Updated on June 1, 2011

Medical Appliance Technician

Medical Appliance Technicians are highly respected members of the medical community. They are employed in doctors' offices, clinics, personal supply centers, and hospitals. The demand for qualified Medical Appliance Technicians is growing, due mainly to the increasing instances of limb loss caused by diseases such as diabetes.

Medical Appliance Technicians are skilled individuals, responsible for reading and interpreting detailed prescriptions, constructing casts, and testing, fitting, and adjusting completed appliances. This is done by the use of both hand and power tools which cut, carve, and grind. The Technicians then fit the finished product to the client, padding and adjusting as necessary to make sure both fit and function are perfect. They instruct the client as to the proper use of the device with patience, compassion and encouragement.

Medical Appliance Technicians must have excellent manual dexterity and eye hand coordination. They must have strong, steady hands, good communication skills and the ability to follow precisely any directions or plans supplied to them by physicians and other medical personnel. These Technicians must not only have the required skill, but they must also have a desire to serve the community.

Using their skill, Medical Appliance Technicians build, fit, and repair braces, supports, artificial limbs, joints, and any other medical appliance that will reduce pain and enable patients to function as normally as possible, in their day to day lives.

If you would like to obtain employment as a Medical Appliance Technician, you must first get your High School diploma. If you are still in high school, you would be wise to take all the courses you can in Mathematics. Physics, Engineering, and Design. Drawing, and sculpture would also be an asset. Try to get some volunteer experience in a related field, possibly a hospital, clinic, or seniors home. After completing High School, your must take specific training in a College or Vocational School. There are one to four year courses which lead either to a Certificate of an Associate Degree. This training provides both classroom and hands-on clinical experience.

There are still some areas in which Medical Appliance Technicians receive on-the-job training. However, as with all jobs, it is preferable to get formal training. Those with the best education are always preferred by employers. With the right training and required experience, you will be qualified to take your certification exam. This is further proof of your skill, knowledge, and dedication to the profession.


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