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Off-Loading (or Off-Weighting as it is sometimes called) is a term used to indicate the attempt to relieve or remove pressure from an area of the body and can be an essential aspect of wound and injury care. Off-Loading can be used when there is a wound present or bony prominence that is causing increased pressure. Off-Loading can also be used when external forces such as a cast or a brace are increasing pressure on certain contact points.

Orthobean products can help achieve proper Off-Loading goals when used properly. Many facilities and individuals will try to stack pillows or blankets to Off-Load parts of the body, only to have the limb or body part roll off or fall from the stack. Not only can this lend to shear and patient discomfort, it also lends to inventory depletion and higher cleaning costs for facilities.

Thanks to the millions of tiny microbeads encased in the spandex and nylon cover, Orthobean will conform to the body and create a "channeling" effect for the limb. This allows for a stable and comfortable Off-Load surface for the individual.

The term off-loading most commonly describes treatments for weightbearing ulcers of the foot, but the concept of off-loading is equally important for pressure ulcers. Continuous protection, pressure reduction, and decreased activity provide the ideal environment to heal many foot wounds.

There are many different types of Off-Loading devices such as microbead pillows, splints, casts, walking boots, crutches, and specialty beds or overlays. Materials commonly used for Off-Loading devices include microbeads, foam, gel, water, and air. "Donut" shaped devices are to be avoided as they can actually increase pressure rather than relieve pressure.

Off-loading is a pivotal but often ignored and neglected aspect of wound care. The type of Off-Loading depends on the characteristics of the patient and wound. Bear in mind the benefits of Off-Loading are only achieved when it is performed correctly and consistently.

Often times a new cast or orthopedic device can be an additional source of pain, beyond the injury or procedure, due to the weight and pressure points created by the very device applied to help the healing process. Orthobean microbead pillows can provide stability and comfort for those in casts or orthopedic devices making recovery and healing a more positive experience.