Section III. SPECIAL EQUIPMENT
THE ORTHOPEDIC BED
a. The basic orthopedic bed is a standard hospital bed with a firm mattress. A
slatted orthopedic bedboard may often be placed under the mattress for extra support.
b. The basic orthopedic bed often requires an over bed frame to accommodate
any traction or suspension system that may be required. The framework is inserted into
or clamped to the corners or ends of the hospital bed. The frame allows the utilization
of adjustable pulleys, slings, harnesses, clamps, and other attachments. The Balkan
frame, illustrated in figure 1-2, is one example of an over bed frame. The Balkan frame
is standard equipment in US Army patient care facilities, but other types of equipment
are used as well.
Figure 1-2. Balkan frame.
c. The trapeze is an attachment that is used to assist the patient in movement
during activities of daily living. Bathing, linen changes, bedpan use, and repositioning
are made easier with the use of the trapeze. The trapeze is grasped firmly with the
hands and a "pull-up" movement lifts the upper body and buttocks from the bed. The
patient may use an unaffected leg for assistance by flexing the knee, placing the foot
flat on the mattress, and pushing down on the bed while pulling straight up on the