Serial Casting – Cast Application
What Is Serial Casting?
Serial casting is a series of casts used to hold and stretch muscles. Each cast is usually worn for one week. It is then removed and a new one is placed on the arm or leg. Serial casting can last as long as six weeks.
When Is Serial Casting Used?
Serial casting is used for patients with:
- Decreased range of motion
How Does It Work?
The occupational therapist (OT) or physical therapist (PT) will put a cast on the arm or leg. Your therapist may ask you to remove the cast before your next visit. If so, they will give you specific instructions. The change in your child’s range of motion will be measured. If it is improving, another cast will be put on.
When the desired range of motion has been reached, or there has been no further increase in the range of motion, the process is stopped. At the last session, you child may get a “bi-valved” cast, which is a cast that can be easily removed. This cast is usually worn just at night and will help maintain your child’s current range of motion.
Preparing Your Child
For leg casts:
- Bring or wear loose fitting shorts.
- The cast needs to dry for 30 minutes before any standing or walking.
- Your child may need some help with walking balance while in their cast(s). If so, you will be given specific instructions on how to help.
For arm casts:
- Bring or wear a front-opening shirt or loose T-shirt.