Orfit Blog

Simulation for radiation oncology – image in UZ Magazine

25 November, 2015 | Tags: | Categorised in:

This page about radiation oncology simulations has appeared in UZ Magazine (Sept 2015) of UZ Leuven Hospital in Belgium.

Simulation – More than half of all cancer patients receive radiotherapy treatment at some point. A patient undergoing radiotherapy will come to the simulator a week before the first session to prepare his or her treatment. During the simulation, radiation oncologists, nursing staff and medical imagers determine the position and the exact dose and place of the radiation. For this purpose, they draw reference lines on the patient.

Patients with head/neck-cancer receive a personalized mask that is made to fit, with lines drawn onto it. These lines will guarantee that a patient is placed in the exact same position every time. A scan will make images of the tumour, the glands and other surrounding organs during the preparatory phase. A medical physicist will be able to appoint the areas that need radiation on these images. Based on that information, the radiation physicist determines the ideal radiation schedule: the tumour receives the prescribed radiation dose, the surrounding organs the lowest possible dose.

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Sup-ER orthosis for infants with brachial plexus injuries

24 November, 2015 | Tags: | Categorised in:

Kim Durlacher (BScOT, CHT) and her colleagues at the British Columbia Children’s Hospital in Vancouver developed a special orthosis for babies born with brachial plexus injuries. The Sup- ER orthosis, described in the Journal of Hand Therapy in 2014, helps maintain the affected arm in supination (Sup-) and external rotation (ER) during nap time and sleeping.  This specific positioning helps to lengthen the tight musculature of the external rotators and forearm supinators, and maintains maximal congruity of the shoulder glenohumeral joint while awaiting for nerve recovery and active movement to return.  A recommended wearing schedule is included in the full article.

On my visit to the Miami Children’s Hospital, I met with Yvette Elias, OTR/ CHT, who also uses this Sup-ER orthosis with her brachial plexus patients.  I had the opportunity to help fabricate the total arm piece using Orfit Colors NS 1/12” (2.0 mm) on an adorable 5 month old! The original description of this orthosis calls for a volar based full arm orthosis, but I thought it might be easier for the parent to don and doff a circumferential version on their child. The thermoplastic orthosis is attached via the D-ring straps to a fabric based waistband that fits over the diaper.

PicMonkey Collage

We’ll get an update from the mother soon on the ease of use of this circumferential variation!

 By: Debby Schwartz

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New product: Orfilight Atomic Blue NS

23 November, 2015 | | Categorised in:


We are proud to announce the launch of a new product: Orfilight Atomic Blue NS!

This thermoplastic material is an excellent choice for all types of small, medium and large orthoses. It weighs 25 to 30 % less than other materials, so it is especially recommended for patients with loss of strength and/or fragile an sensitive skin, for example: elderly persons, pediatric treatments, rheumatic treatments. It can serve as a lightweight base for all attachments and is an ideal splinting material to fabricate post-surgical orthoses.

Orfilight Atomic Blue NS has a soft velvet surface touch and antibacterial properties, as well as a non-stick coating.

It is also available in black: Orfilight Black NS. More information can be found on our website.

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Splint in the Spotlight – Dart Thrower’s Motion Orthosis (also known as the Dart Splint)

5 November, 2015 | Tags: , | Categorised in:


Our Orfit blog shares information and instructions in matching our thermoplastic materials to orthotic designs.
Please check back frequently to gain inspiration and ideas in orthotic fabrication for all of your 
patient’s needs.

Splint Design:  Dart Thrower’s Motion Orthosis (also known as the Dart Splint)


Objectives of the Splint:

The Dart Thrower’s Motion Splint allows for guided motion in the plane known as “dart thrower’s motion”, an oblique motion of the wrist that is incorporated during most of our activities of daily living. The motion consists of radial deviation and extension (called radial extension) towards ulnar deviation and flexion (called ulnar flexion). It has been noted in biomechanical studies that the proximal row of carpal bones does not move during this motion. Therefore a splint design that allows for early controlled wrist motion in a narrow plane of motion might be helpful for regaining some functional range after injuries to the proximal row of carpal bones, specifically injuries to the Scaphoid- Lunate ligament.


This splint is only helpful when this ligament is intact. The splint pattern is lightweight, comfortable and designed to guide the wrist through this specific motion pattern, while restricting pure wrist flexion and/or extension. Continue reading

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The Static Progressive Rap – presented by Debby Schwartz at ASHT 2015, Denver

29 October, 2015 | Tags: | Categorised in:

Static progressive orthoses are a type of mobilization orthoses used to help patients regain passive range of motion after injury.

This creative “rap” discusses the concept of using this type of orthotic intervention and was presented at ASHT 2015 in Denver by Debby Schwartz, OTD, OTR/L, CHT at her session on the current evidence supporting static progressive orthoses for the upper extremity.

Rap Mic

The Static Progressive Rap

Deborah A. Schwartz, OTD, OTR/L, CHT

Product and Educational Specialist, Physical Rehabilitation

Orfit Industries America



Static progressive is the way to go

 Keep the TERT high but the tension kind of low.

Use static progressive after a fracture

For treatment of stiffness or a joint contracture.


Hand trauma can lead to a bad Situation,

with joint contracture a common Complication.

And quickly we may face client Frustration,

Our own Aggravation and no Salvation.

We all know ‘bout 3 phases of Healing:

Inflammed or Fibroplasia, hey, we know with what we’re dealing.

And the optimum treatment for Scar Maturation

Is Low Load Stress over long Duration.

Continue reading

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Immobilizing a patient has never been easier, more precise and safer – new instruction videos for molding a thermoplastic mask

22 October, 2015 | Tags: , | Categorised in:

In order to immobilize a brain or head and neck patient in a stable and comfortable way it is important to mold a good thermoplastic mask.

Molding an Orfit High Precision Thermoplastic Mask requires a certain technique. This easy technique is explained step-by-step in our instruction videos.

The videos are available in multiple languages both for a 3-points head mask and a 5-points head, neck and shoulder mask.

English - Efficast 3-points Head Immobilization Mask – Instruction Video

English – Efficast 5-points Head, Neck and Shoulders Immobilization Mask – Instruction Video

Other languages


Efficast 3-pts masque : https://youtu.be/N1a1_-9nEbE
Efficast 5-pts masque: https://youtu.be/6RMIG1FK9gk


Efficast 3-Punkte-maske: https://youtu.be/t11HU7TDS08
Efficast 5-Punkte-maske: https://youtu.be/yI8JuJKu9Qs


Efficast 3-pts masker: https://youtu.be/LHJ7p1ro0A0
Efficast 5-pts masker: https://youtu.be/M-zmNR76A7M


Efficast 3-pts máscara: https://youtu.be/QIjpmUU68B4
Efficast 5-pts máscara: https://youtu.be/IAdXCdzsLqM

UK English

Efficast 3-pts mask: https://youtu.be/ZZoS3nMtDUI
Efficast 5-pts mask: https://youtu.be/p3HtLYuHIKY

All Efficast thermoplastic pre-cut masks have innovative integrated L-shaped profiles that enable you to quickly and easily secure the mask to the base plate and to quickly remove it without effort.

All Orfit masks are treated with a unique water-based non-stick coating that has antibacterial properties and that prevents sticking of the mask to skin, hair and hardware.

More information on our website >>

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11 Frequently Asked Questions regarding Orfit’s Splinting Materials

5 October, 2015 | Tags: , | Categorised in:

Below are some interesting questions about the Orfit product range, recently asked by one of our distributors. The Orfit Product Specialist team, Jean-Christophe Arias from France and Debby Schwartz from the United States, offers detailed answers to each of these questions.

We believe this information may be useful and helpful for everyone who makes orthoses with Orfit products regularly!


1) How can we easily cut sheets of thermoplastic material?

There are 2 ways:

  • With a utility knife or box cutter, make 2-3 cuts onto the material, then bend the sheet, and cut it vertically in 2;
  • Use strong scissors.


2) What are the advantages of Orfilight over Orfit Classic? Is it easy to work with?

Due to Orfilight’s extreme lightness, foamy feel and lightly irregular surface, patients may not perspire as much. Orfilight sticks very well, but it’s easy to take apart if needed.

Our recommendation is to use 1.6 mm (1/16 “) for fingers, 2.5 mm (1/12 “) for wrist and thumb or rest splints for wrist, 3.2 mm (1/8 “) for larger splints.

You can use Orfilight Black NS with its non-stick NS coating for dynamic splints as well.


3) Is Orfit NS suitable for pediatrics? Is it possible to mold it directly onto clothes or on hairy skin?

Orfit NS is suitable for pediatrics, you can directly mold the material on any surface. Even if it sticks slightly when you start molding, it will be easy to take apart when cooled down.

If you want to separate 2 pieces of a sticky plastic, put them back in hot water (65° C) for a while and slowly tear them apart.

If 2 pieces of a non-sticky product stick to themselves, cool them off (with cold water): it is then easy to separate them.


4) Which materials become transparent at activation temperature?

Orfit Classic, Orfit NS and Aquafit NS.


5) Which materials are best for attaching metal, hinges, and/ or springs?

All our products (except Orfilight, Orfit Flex and Orfit Ease) are suitable if you want to fix something with screws or rivets, or use a hinge for larger splints.

If you want to attach a spring, our finger extension assist coil and wire and/or the Orfitube, you can choose between all products and thicknesses.

If you want to obtain something stronger, then use a material between 3.2mm (1/8”) and 4.2 mm (1/6).

Continue reading

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Trouble shoot for Orfit Splinting Materials – made by Alfred, an Orfit-enthusiast from Kenya

21 September, 2015 | | Categorised in:

Below is a list of troubles that might occur while splinting with Orfit products, with several solutions offered per possible problem.

The list is based on a document that was sent to us by Alfred Ngetich, a splinting professional and Orfit fan from Kenya. He regularly organizes workshops for fellow-therapists and feels that the same type of troubles often occur.

The list was reviewed by our own splinting experts Debby Schwartz and Jean-Christophe Arias. We believe it can be useful and helpful for anyone who fabricates orthoses with our thermoplastic materials regularly!

1. The Velcro hook keeps coming off:

  • There may be an oily residue on the splint surface – try to clean off with an alcohol swipe.
  • Trim the Velcro corners.
  • Dry heat the Velcro hook adhesive briefly.
  • Scratch and dry heat on the splint surface the exact area where you will place the Velcro hook.
  • Use a small piece of activated thermoplastic material to secure the Velcro hook and/or loop on to the splint.

2.  The splint edges are not smooth:

  • Use one continuous cut.
  • Use a sharp pair of scissors.
  • Trim the edges when they are still warm.
  • Flare distal and proximal ends.
  • Dry heat and use the thumb to smoothen the edges.
  • Use moleskin, padding, or edging strip over the rough edges.

3.  The splint is too weak to support the limb:

  • Avoid overstretching the thermoplastic material when molding.
  • Check your pattern /design.
  • Choose the correct thickness of the material for the splint you are making.
  • Check the expiration date of the material.
  • A circular pattern is always more rigid.

Continue reading

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Orfit Thermoplastic Immobilization Masks used on Elekta Leksel Gamma Knife Icon

16 September, 2015 | Tags: , , | Categorised in:

© Elekta – Careforthebrain.com


Orfit Industries is proud to announce that our innovative thermoplastic immobilization masks are used on the Elekta Leksel Gamma Knife Icon.

Elekta is a company with a long standing reputation in cancer treatment and it has selected Orfit Industries to develop an immobilization mask that allows non-invasive immobilization of the patient on their new Gamma Knife. The thermoplastic mask allows the radiation therapists to immobilize the patients in a more comfortable way compared to an invasive head frame, while maintaining a similar stability during the treatment. The use of a thermoplastic mask also allows the treatment in multiple sessions.

Orfit Industries and Elekta have collaborated closely in this project in order to find the right shape, configuration and attachment for the thermoplastic mask.

Finally a hybrid mask has been chosen for optimal stability during the treatment.

© Elekta – Careforthebrain.com


© Elekta – Careforthebrain.com


Read more about Elekta’s Leksell Gamma Knife Icon >>

Read more about Orfit’s Patient Immobilization Masks and Solutions >>

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Splint in the Spotlight – Anti-Swan Neck Orthosis

1 September, 2015 | Tags: , | Categorised in:


Our Orfit blog shares information and instructions in matching our thermoplastic materials to orthotic designs.
Please check back frequently to gain inspiration and ideas in orthotic fabrication for all of your 
patient’s needs.

Splint Design:  Anti-Swan Neck Orthosis

Here is another example of how a simply designed orthosis can have an incredible impact on improved functionality for the patient with a hyperextension deformity of the PIP joint, known as a swan neck deformity. The typical posture of this deformity is PIP hyperextension and DIP flexion. This deformity might develop with pathology at the MCP, PIP and/ or DIP joint levels.Anti-Swan


  1. MCP Joint:
    Intrinsic tightness and central tendon tightness can lead to MCP joint subluxation. The resultant MCP flexion deformity can cause a secondary PIP hyperextension deformity as a result of the imbalance of tendons and ligaments.
  2. PIP Joint:
    Synovitis and/ or inflammation of the PIP joint capsule (Rheumatoid Arthritis) can cause overstretching of the volar plate, leading to PIP joint hyperextension. In addition, injury to the FDS at this level can also lead to hyperextension at the PIP joint as there is loss of the dynamic stabilization of the joint.
  3. DIP Joint:
    A mallet injury at the DIP joint can also lead to an imbalance of tendons and ligaments. The injury to the terminal extensor tendon also affects other soft tissue ligaments at their distal insertion. The droop into DIP flexion results in more force across the dorsal PIP joint pulling into hyperextension.
  4. Laxity of the Joints:
    Some people are born with extreme laxity of the joints capsules, allowing for a tendency to hyperextend at the PIP joint.  While this may not elicit a problem in most individuals because they can move in and out of the posture, in severe cases the resultant hyper laxity can cause functional deficits and lead to contractures.  Individuals with Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome in particular are at risk for developing significant functional deficits due to joint laxity.

Continue reading

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