Ace Wrapping Lower Extremity (Leg) Stumps
Ace wrapping the stump after amputation prepares it for fitting artificial limbs (prostheses). Ace wrapping shrinks and shapes the stump. To wrap, begin with a dry rolled ace bandage. Your stump should also be dry. Wear the bandage at all times.
Below the Knee Amputations
1. Start at the end of the stump. Pull the ace wrap diagonally, in an upward direction to secure the wrap in place upon itself. Wrap, making all turns in a diagonal direction, forming a criss-cross pattern. Never use horizontal turns as they tend to constrict circulation.
2. Do not encircle the end of the stump with one turn. It may cause the skin to crease over the scar. Cover the inside, then the outside end of the stump with each turn.
3. Continue making diagonal turns. Apply firm pressure over the end of the stump.
4. Ace bandage pressure should become less and less as you wrap higher toward the thigh.
5. Extend the wrap above your knee. There should be at least one turn above the kneecap.
6. Anchor the ace bandage with tape. Do not use safety pins. Re-wrap your stump every ________ hours or more often if the ace bandage slips or bunches.
Above the Knee Amputations
1. Start with the bandage in the groin area. Roll toward the outside, the behind and around the stump, covering the inside. Be certain to keep the bandage smooth. Avoid wrinkles as they may cause skin irritations.
2. Roll around behind the stump. Continue down and around the outside half of the end.
3. Continue making diagonal turns around the stump until all skin is covered with at least two layers of bandage and firm pressure is obtained over the end.
Avoid encircling the end with one turn as this tends to cause skin creases in the scar.
Never use circular turns as this constricts circulation.
Pressure should be greatest at the end, and lessen as you wrap toward the hip.
Include all soft tissue on the inside of the thigh at the groin.
4. Begin the turn around the hip as shown here. The bandage should be placed as high as possible on the inside of the thigh and then cross over the hip joint.
5. Carry the bandage behind and around the pelvis, crossing just below the waist on the non-amputated side. Returning to the amputated side, cross over the hip joint again.
6. Finish the bandage by making diagonal turns around the end of the stump.
Anchor the bandage with tape. Do not use safety pins.
The bandage should not cause pain. If so, remove the bandage and re-wrap.
Re-wrap your stump every 3-4 hours or more often if the bandage slips or bunches.
The information provided should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed physician should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.
Last Updated: 04/17/2013
Copyright © 04/17/2013 University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics Authority. All rights reserved. Produced by the Department of Nursing. HF#4409
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