On Health

Spotlight: Premier Prosthetics and Orthotics 12.15.21

Facing the loss of a limb is a daunting prospect, but thanks to Premier Prosthetics and Orthotics, it’s an experience that no St. Louisan has to handle on their own. The clinic was founded with the mission to make the patients’ quality of life their priority, and the Premier team serves patients with the highest level of convenience and care.

All the work at Premier Prosthetics is done in house, making it a truly St. Louis-based business. Production Manager and registered prosthetic technician Tom Schmidt has 25 years of experience, and since no element of fabrication is outsourced, patients have a shorter wait to receive their prosthesis. “Our team has a great balance of ambition, talent and experience,” Schmidt says. “It separates us from everyone else.”

Another unique aspect of the clinic is its continuity of care. “We try to begin working with our patients before they have their amputations or immediately after,” says Greg Doerr, one of the original founders and owners. “We stay with them throughout the whole process, including attending doctor and physical therapy appointments.” To make things easier for clients, Premier Prosthetics has six mobile units, serving the bi-state area of Missouri and Illinois, which function as full labs. This allows them to do everything that would traditionally be done in the office in the patient’s own home.

Premier Prosthetics’ patients have a variety of goals they want to achieve with their prosthesis, Doerr notes. “It’s important that we get to know each person,” he says. “Some patients want to be able to do things like ride horses or play a certain sport, and others are focused on remaining independent in their homes and being able to do everyday chores.” To make sure people are matched with the prosthetic that meets their needs and improves their quality of life, practitioners work with a team of other healthcare professionals to evaluate the patient’s prosthetic needs. Then, they meet with the patient to determine the best option.

Once the prosthesic is selected, the patient can personalize it to make it their own. “We can customize the prosthesis with a design to match the patient’s personality,” Schmidt says. “In the past, many people wanted it to look like a leg, but now, we’re seeing more patients wanting to show off the prosthesis because they are proud to put it on.” Each prosthesic is as unique as its owner, and they can be brightly colored, feature the emblem of a favorite sports team or include other designs like camouflage or the American flag.

After patients receive their prosthesis, Premier Prosthetics continues to provide support, developing a relationship that truly lasts a lifetime. Practitioners work closely with physical therapists and other health care providers and regularly make adjustments to ensure the limb continues to fit correctly. Typically, a replacement prosthesis is created every three to five years. Patients truly become like family, according to Doerr. “One of the best parts of our job is watching people grow,” Schmidt adds, noting that he’s worked with patients from their youth into adulthood. “We start seeing them while they’re in the hospital, and year after year, we work to make their quality of life better.”

343 S. Kirkwood Road, Ste. 200

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