FAQ

What is the emPOWER™ Ankle and how does it work? (Click to expand)

The emPOWER Ankle is the next generation design of the BiOM Ankle, the only prosthesis with powered propulsion for enhanced mobility. The emPOWER Ankle is a powered microprocessor device designed with both passive and actively powered components to replace the missing muscles and tendons lost due to amputation of the lower limb. The performance is guided by three computers and the processors are able to adjust the ankle’s stiffness and propulsion power.

 

The emPOWER Advantage

Power

  • Replaces the function & power of lost muscles & tendons.
  • Gives you net positive energy instead of taking it away – even up ramps, hills & stairs.

Control

  • Life-like ankle movement that normalizes your walking gait.
  • Significantly reduces joint forces to help alleviate pain and the potential for osteoarthritis.

Stability

  • Adjusts ankle power, resistance and flexion in real-time.
  • Centers your balance for confidence across any surface.

What are the Clinical benefits of the emPOWER Ankle?

emPOWER is the only prosthesis that can offer you:

  • Increased energy for faster walking with less fatigue and easier climbing of ramps, hills and stairs1,2,3
  • Normalized walking gait to reduce joint forces that lead to pain and the potential for osteoarthritis1,2
  • Real-time control of full ankle movement for improved safety and stability across any surface

Who is the emPOWER Ankle for?

The emPOWER Ankle is for people with above or below the knee amputations who are low to moderately active and want to maintain an active lifestyle.

Is the emPOWER Ankle covered by insurance reimbursement?

The emPOWER Ankle is covered by a number of providers including Workers Compensation, the US Department of Veterans Affairs, the Department of Labor, Vocational Rehabilitation, Auto Insurers and SoldierStrong. At this time, the emPOWER Ankle is not covered by Medicare. To learn whether your insurance covers the emPOWER Ankle please speak with your provider or contact BionX.

If you have ever served 24 months of consecutive active duty in the U.S. military, you may be eligible for prosthetic device coverage through the Department of Veteran’s Affairs – even if you currently use private insurance for the majority of your healthcare needs.

To determine your VA eligibility, click here: http://www.va.gov/healthbenefits/apply/veterans.asp

BionX understands that reimbursement can be time-consuming and complex. This is why BionX provides reimbursement support to ensure that your provider can submit your claim as quickly as possible.

What is the weight of the emPOWER Ankle?

The total weight of the emPOWER Ankle with battery, foot module, sock and foot cover is 4.8 lbs. (2.2 kg), which is 6% less than the weight of the BiOM Ankle (5.1 lbs.).  This is approximately the weight of the anatomical ankle for a 190 lb. person.

How long does the emPOWER Battery last?

The emPOWER Battery lasts up to 2X longer than the BiOM Ankle Battery (up to 8 hours). User weight and activity level have the largest effect on battery run time. Both emPOWER Batteries can be fully charged in as little as 90 minutes.  The batteries are equipped with indicator lights which reflect their state of charge with a touch of a button – each lit bar represents 25% of charge.  In addition, an alert can be set that will vibrate the ankle when battery capacity is low.

Is the emPOWER Ankle water resistant?

The emPOWER Ankle is water resistant but not waterproof.  Limit water exposure to light rain or small puddles.

What does the emPOWER warranty cover?

The emPOWER Ankle and Charger are covered by a 3 year warranty.  The emPOWER battery is covered by a 1 year warranty.

How can I get an emPOWER Ankle?

Fill out our Try emPOWER form to find out if you qualify. We will work with your prosthetist to schedule your BionX Experience.

Is the emPOWER Ankle available outside of the United States?

The emPOWER Ankle is available in Canada, South Africa, the United Kingdom and select European countries through trained clinicians. The emPOWER Ankle is subject to export restrictions governing medical devices and cannot be sold directly to consumers.

Clinical References

  1. Herr, A. Grabowski, ‘Bionic ankle–foot prosthesis normalizes walking gait for persons with leg amputation’, Proc Biol Sci. Vol. 7; 279(1728): 457–464. 2012.
  2. Grabowski, S. D’Andrea. ‘Effects of a powered ankle-foot prosthesis on kinetic loading of the unaffected leg during level-ground walking,’ Journal of Neuroengineering and Rehabilitation, 10(49), 2013.
  3. Esposito, et al., ‘Step-to-step transition work during level and inclined walking using passive and powered ankle–foot prostheses’, Prosthet Orthot Int., 2015.
  4. Data on file from the emPOWER Ankle validation testing.