Essay Sample on Orthopedic Impairements: Jane's Story

Published: 2019-10-18
Essay Sample on Orthopedic Impairements: Jane's Story
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Health and Social Care Child development
Pages: 4
Wordcount: 945 words
8 min read

Jane was two years old when her family was involved in a fatal car accident that resulted in her left arm being amputated. Also, she suffered a severe head injury that affected her speech to date. Jane is now six years old but faces the challenge of effective communication. Though she is right handed she has now been forced to work with one arm.

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Having lost both her parents and adopted by her aunt, Jane is considered as suffering from orthopaedic impairments which affect her learning process. However, teachers at her school now understand Janes condition and have employed several strategies to improve her learning through special sessions and indoor activities.

What is Orthopedic Impairment?

Orthopedic Impairment is defined as one or more severe impairments that affect a childs learning performance and ability. This is according to Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement (IDEA) 2004 act (Paths, 2013). Usually, the term orthopaedic impairment is used interchangeably with physical disability. Of importance to note are the varieties of impairments. These include congenital anomaly which is characterised by the absence of some member, disease caused impairments such as bone tuberculosis, and impairments resulting from other causes such as amputations, burns, and fractures.

What are the condition rates?

Though Orthopedic Impairment is considered a condition that is hard to evaluate and declare the child to be suffering from it, past statistics indicate thousand of students between the age of 5 and 18 receive orthopaedic impairments disability education annually. In 2004 for instance, the United States department of education reported at least 74000 students who suffered from the disorder (Ohio department of education, 2015).

What are the categories of Orthopedic Impairments?

According to IDEA, orthopaedic impairments are categorised in three main varieties. These include neuromotor impairments, musculoskeletal disorders, and degenerative diseases. Every disorder is dependent on a particular disease and its individual factors (Paths, 2013). Neuromotor impairment is specific to the brain or the nervous system. Degenerative diseases, on the other hand, affect the motor development while musculoskeletal disorders are specific to physical limitations.

What are the examples of Orthopedic Impairments?

Every disease characterised as an orthopaedic impairment is specific to one of the three disorders. IDEA categorises the disorders based on the specific parts they affect. Neuromotor impairments comprise of brain associated challenges. Most of these impairments are noted to occur before birth and result to motor challenges which affect various body systems. Examples of this type of disorder include spina bifida and cerebral palsy.

The most common type of neuromotor impairments is cerebral palsy which entails the various non-progressive challenges affecting posture movement. The condition is caused by damage to the brain before or during birth. The most common example of the degenerative disorder is muscular dystrophy, a hereditary condition characterised by the weakness of the muscles (Paths, 2013). On the other hand, musculoskeletal disorders are conditions affecting the physical ability. An example is limb deficiency.

How are Orthopedic impairments assessed

Assessing orthopaedic impairments are challenging due to the various types of disorders. A child suffering from orthopaedic impairments is evaluated before they enter school. However, there are instances when the impairments may be missed during assessment though can appear at an advanced age. The assessment is conducted by a thorough medical evaluation carried out by a licensed physician. Another system of evaluation is monitoring and evaluation of how the orthopaedic impairments influence the childs learning ability. Other assessment criteria are evaluating the students physical and social adaptive behaviours. This is best monitored through rating scales, checklists, and inventories. Some of the important signs that the teacher may notice affiliated with orthographic impairments include frequent accidents, complaints of chronic pain and poor coordination (Keith, 2007). It is also important to consider basic information such as speech, language, vision and hearing.

How can teachers assist such students?

A licensed special education teacher plays a vital role in the life of a child suffering from orthopaedic impairments. Once the child has been assessed with the condition, it is important to involve the parent in the childs education program. Included also are psychologist, licenced physician and other professional personnel. For instance, addressing orthographic impairments of a student suffering from the neuromuscular disorder is done through daily living conditions, using adaptive equipment and sensory integration. A condition is referred to as an orthographic disorder if it lasts for more than sixty days (Paths, 2013). While evaluating the childs condition, not only does the teacher consider physical ability but also other treatments such as occupational therapy. For students suffering from this disorder, key players in effective therapy are social and peer issues. The child suffers from low self-esteem and reserved social behaviour if rejected by other students. Therefore, it is the obligation of teachers to ensure actions such as mockery do not occur and that the disabled child is socially accepted.

What are the roles of parents?

The parents of children suffering from Orthopaedic impairment should consider working closely with the special education teachers for a successful therapy. This will also give the child a coordinated support while at school and home. It is the obligation of the parent to ensure that the child is taking all the required medication and treatment as recommended by the physician. While at home, the parent is responsible for providing ultimate care to the child while controlling their movements and activities. It is also the duty of the parent to ensure their child is staying healthy and relating well with other children.


KEITH SWEARINGEN. (2007). Orthopedic impairment. Retrieved from

Ohio department of education. (2015, November 23). Retrieved July 29, 2016, from

Paths, S. E. C. (2013). West Virginia. Retrieved July 29, 2016, from

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