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Jaipur Foot: A Cost Effective Prosthetic Leg

jaipur foot
Samyak Lalit
Samyak Lalit | June 26, 2018 (Last update: September 13, 2023)

Samyak Lalit is an author and disability rights activist. He is a polio survivor and the founder of projects like Kavita Kosh, Gadya Kosh, TechWelkin, WeCapable, Dashamlav and Viklangta Dot Com. Website: www.lalitkumar.in

I contracted polio at the age of four. Since then I have been getting the suggestions of using a Jaipur Foot. Well, most of the advise-giving people did not really know the details of what exactly is Jaipur Foot. However, the number of advises I have received clearly point to the popularity of Jaipur Foot. And most of this praise and popularity has come for this prosthetic device by the way of word of mouth.

Today I am going to tell you all about this amazing thing that has changed the lives of millions who are affected by locomotor disability due to lower limb amputation.

What is Jaipur Foot?

Jaipur Foot is a prosthetic leg being produced and distributed by a non-profit organization named Bhagwan Mahavir Viklang Sahayata Samiti (BMVSS). It was originally designed by a Jaipur-based sculptor Ram Chandra Sharma. This rubber-based prosthetic leg is meant for the people with below-knee amputation. However BMVSS now provides other types of orthosis as well.

jaipur foot

Who is the Founder of Jaipur Foot?

The idea of Jaipur Foot was proposed by Dr. Pramod Karan Sethi and Master Ram Chandra Sharma. Dr. Sethi was a renowned orthopedic surgeon while Ram Chandra Sharma ji was a sculptor. They both combined their skills to design the Jaipur Foot. Therefore, the credit of inventing the world famous prosthetic leg goes collectively to the duo of Dr. PK Sethi and Master Ram Chandra Sharma.

Dr. PK Sethi and Ram Chandra Sharma: founders and inventors of jaipur foot prosthetic leg

Who Makes Jaipur Foot?

Bhagwan Mahavir Viklang Sahyata Samiti, a non-profit organization, manufactures and distributes the Jaipur Foot. BMVSS was founded by Devendra Raj Mehta in 1975. This organization has played a vital role in supporting and expanding the production of Jaipur Foot prosthetic legs.

Why is Jaipur Foot So Famous?

Low cost is the main reason behind the popularity and reputation of Jaipur Foot. It is probably the world’s lowest cost prosthetic leg. Use of rubber and wood in manufacturing of Jaipur Foot helps keep the costs low.

Word about Jaipur Foot spread even more rapidly when actress Sudha Chandran, fitted with Jaipur Foot, danced in her Telugu movie Mayuri (1981). The movie was remade in Hindi with the title Nache Mayuri (1984). Both the films are based on the life of Sudha Chandran and she played lead role in both the movies.

Watch Sudha Chandran dance with Jaipur Foot

sudha chandran: famous disabled people india

How Good is Jaipur Foot?

Jaipur Foot is made of rubber and wood to keep the cost low. So, it is not as durable as the composite carbon fiber variants, but still it is pretty good. A Jaipur Foot typically lasts for about three years. After that you would need to get a new one fitted. People using Jaipur Foot can run, dance, climb trees, cycle and do most of the other activities.

What is the Cost of Jaipur Foot?

According to BMVSS, the manufacturing cost of Jaipur Foot is $30 only. However, BMVSS provides these prosthetic legs for free.

Benefits of Jaipur Foot

  • The Jaipur Foot has virtually got the same range of functions as the biological human leg
  • Thanks to the designer, Ram Chandra Sharma ji, it looks pretty much like a normal leg
  • Because it is made of rubber, Jaipur Foot is waterproof
  • It may be worn with or without shoes
  • Usual life span of the Jaipur Foot is around 3 years
  • It has both the contact socket and the outer socket
  • The above-knee prosthesis is of highly advanced ischial containment variety
  • While making the limb, the proper bio-mechanical alignment is ensured
  • A below-knee prosthesis can be made in just three hours!
  • Jaipur Foot is lightweight. For example, for a middle-sized person the socket with belt and Jaipur Foot, the total weight of a below-knee limb varies between 1.3 kg and 1.5 kg

How to Get Jaipur Foot?

Getting a Jaipur Foot is fairly easy process. Here are the steps:

  • Travel to the nearest BMVSS branch. You may also choose to go to Jaipur in the Indian state of Rajasthan and visit the main office of the BMVSS
  • Registration
    • When you reach the BMVSS to get a Jaipur Foot, first of all you would need to register yourself.
  • Assessment of Disability
    •  Experts assess the extent of your disability. This is done to decide what type of orthosis would be most suitable for you.
  • Casting
    • In order to make stump part for the orthosis, a Plaster of Paris cast is made from the leg of the patient.
  • Fitting and Trial
    • When the whole prosthetic leg is ready, it is fitted in the leg of the patient. Then the patient walks to try out the new foot.
  • Adjustments
    • If the patient faces any trouble walking with the newly made Jaipur Foot, adjustments are made then and there.

That’s it. You’re free to go home with your new Jaipur Foot! No bills need to be paid as it’s all free!

How Must Time Does it Take To Get a Jaipur Foot

It only takes a day to manufacture a complete Jaipur Foot prosthetic leg. However, because there is large number of patients at BMVSS, there could be a waiting list.

Practically, you would get your Jaipur Foot within a week.

BMVSS also provides free food and accommodation to those who need it during their stay in Jaipur.

Documentary Film on Jaipur Foot

The Jaipur Foot has been the subject of many documentaries. Following film was made by BBC. The film shows brief history of Jaipur Foot and also how people are using this prosthetic leg in day-to-day life. According to this film, the BMVSS is valued at $600 million by an international management expert.

We hope this article on Jaipur Foot answered all your questions about this famous prosthetic leg. If you have more information on this subject, please write it in comment — so that other readers could benefit from it. Stay connected with WeCapable!

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8 responses to “Jaipur Foot: A Cost Effective Prosthetic Leg”

  1. Avatar Scott M says:

    I am a physician in Canada who works in Africa and I would be interested in becoming trained to offer the Jaipur foot to patients that I see. Does BMVSS offer training such as this?

  2. Avatar Prakhar Saxena says:

    Please start serving your services in Uttarakhand as well.We dont find any of your service centre over there.

    Thanking you!

  3. Avatar Pritam Saha says:

    We are searching for artificial limb manufacture. It is very urgent. Kindly share your address and contact details.

  4. Avatar Rajesh saxena says:

    Dear sir
    I am rajesh saxena form Jaipur.
    One of my relative form Pune Maharastra wants to a foot there for kindly provide contact details
    where i have to discus all matter
    Rajesh saxena
    9680026609
    jaipur

  5. Avatar murshid says:

    I am Murshid from Ramanathapuram, my left leg above knee has been removed. I would like to have Jaipur Foot. Please let me know the place in Madurai.

  6. Avatar Akshayasubramaiyan says:

    My father’s left leg has been removed. What will be cost and if the facility is available in Tamil Nadu. Can you give me details to contact them?

  7. Avatar Courtney says:

    I am a double amputee living in Jamaica and l would like very much to know about this revolution in the world. I have the need for 2 prosthetic legs and I am being quoted as much as $500,000 JA.

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