Temple: Students learn importance of prosthetic treatment

TEMPLE, Texas (KWTX) Prosthetic treatment can be life-changing for amputee patients, especially those in the military community.

(Chief of Prosthetics Lab shows students his prosthetic leg)

Some local students got a behind-the-scenes look at this specialty career at the Veterans Affairs Healthcare Center in Temple.

Prosthetic experts said they hoped students learned something about the field, and appreciate for veteran’s care as well.

"Seeing a guy come in that can't communicate, can't walk, can't do anything on their own, and now they're out doing it on their own, being independent,” Temple VA Chief of Prosthetics Chad Martin said.

Students with the local youth nonprofit, IMPAC Outreach, got an up-close tour of the prosthetic process.

Some, like high school sophomore Lauren Bailey said they want to pursue this career in the future.

"My uncle has a prosthetic, and seeing him have his transformations around in his daily life, make me want to help other people that have the same problem as him,” Bailey said.

People like hundreds of local veterans, and even Paul Lanciault, the Chief of the Temple VA Prosthetics Lab.

He said his leg was amputated after a battle with bone cancer, which prompted him to pursue the prosthetics field.

"My outlook was always, you play with the cards you're dealt with, so make the best of it,” Lanciault said.

It was a surprise at the end of the tour that shocked students.
"I was so surprised, I didn't think that he would have one!" student Malachi Dixon said.

The experts in Temple said most people don’t think of prosthetics as a career choice, which is something they hope to change with continued education and awareness.