Leatherwork Pattern Generation by Computer

MARK VOLT, CO**, AND DALE SOUTTER-GLASS Dallas, Texas


The Texas Scottish Rite Hospital Orthotic Laboratory treats over 3300 children per year. The hospital must operate efficiently because it does not charge for any services. To streamline production we developed a BASIC language computer program for generating leatherwork patterns for thigh sections of KAFOs. The program reduced pattern fabrication time from 20 to 30 minutes to 3 to 5 minutes per thigh cuff.

The practitioner records patient measurements for the orthosis, namely proximal and distal thigh circumference, desired width of cuff, and lateral rise. The technician enters the patient's name, date, and leg measurements, and runs the program. The 80 column printer prints eleven border points of the pattern, patient information, and input measurements. The technician connects the dots and trims the pattern. The pattern is now ready to fit to the thigh section. Standard sewing procedures are followed. The program provides a cost effective means of saving technician time, decreasing patient backlog and turnaround time, and improving quality control.

**Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Crippled Children, 2222 Welborn Street, Dallas, TX 75219