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Heather Mills - Amputee Forum


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About Marc_L

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  • Amputation Type:
    Left Knee Disarticulation
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  • Amputation Cause:
    Auto/Pedestrian Accident
  1. Thanks for the comments & compliments. It's too bad I deleted the LONG version! I must admit that in the few days since I wrote that, I have had 5-10% of that pain come back, so it wasn't a 100% solution, but it has still meant the difference between absolute torture and mild/moderate discomfort. I'll be sure and write again sometime ... I just need another good topic, and a few beers in me to "loosen up" my writing style.
  2. Marc_L

    C-leg 2nd mode settings for Golf

    I'm more of a hacker than a golfer (my handicap is trying to beat triple-digits per 18). My AK is my left leg, and I can't swing left handed, so my right-handed swing is very ugly to look at because I can't end up on my hydraulic knee or it'd buckle. So my weight transfer ends up on my rear/good/right leg. Again, very ugly to look at. I'm straight, but my distance suffers. I've recently talked with my leg guy about the C-leg, and it's ability to help me follow thru onto my left leg. Y'all are righty/righty's ... I wonder if there are any right-handed swingers with left-leg c-legs out there. I'd love to hear their stories also.
  3. I've been a left knee disartic for 24 years, and I've been through my fair share of prosthetic sockets ... All these years, I've used suction sockets with powder. No pull-socks or fumbling with the valve. I'd just powder up and fart my way into it ... and try not to inhale too much of the Gold-Bond Dust Cloud that would result. Sores came and went, but nothing chronic ... and I could recover by simply taking it easy for a day or 2. I got a new leg/socket 1.5yrs ago and this one has taken the longest for me to get used to. The first "fix" was almost laughable when after 2-3 months of use, I brought it back in to get 1/2 inch of length removed (not my leg, silly, the prosthetic!). My back was KILLING me and I finally figured out that my good leg had to be somewhat tip-toed with my prosthetic heel on the floor. After he removed 1/2", my back fell back into place and life went on. ... but wait! While I agree that alignment to the fraction of an inch is important for a healthy gait (and back), this isn't the point of my rant ... My recent JOY is due to a MUCH FINER adjustment. At the "shortening" appointment noted above, the prosthetist gave me a bottle of liquid silk because he couldn't find any powder. It was a little strange, too slippery for my liking, but it got me home. I used it a couple times after that, but preferred my ol' powder. I just kept the silk under the sink. ... months go by ... After a little weight gain, the powder wasn't letting me get all the way into the socket anymore. So I pulled out the liquid silk and problem solved ... or so I thought! I got used to the slipperyness and ended up preferring it over the powder. (and now I can dust yearly instead of weekly) [Funny Side Story: When I tried to re-order some "liquid silk" like the prosthetist gave me, my google searches came up a little on the "mature" side, if you know what I mean. I had to browse some forums to get a link to the new name for the prosthetic-socket cream. Apparently the bottle I was given was one of the last of it's kind ... the other users of that name must've won the name-battle. Long Story Short, if you're looking for prosthetic-socket cream, search for "Dry-Lite", not liquid silk. You've been warned.] So the powder goes under the sink, the wet-stuff comes out, and now I'm fully fitting down into my socket. All is well. For a day or 2. After a few days I develop a new tender spot down near my knee, on the outer edge. Very very tender to the slightest touch. Not blistered or open, just sensitive. Every step is a wince from a dime-sized area. It's not related to weight bearing, or wear/tear ... it just a constant touching of the outer edge of my knee. (as a disartic, I still have the "knubs" at the end of my femur). Every step hurts, but turning to the left makes it worse. Like having a thumb-tack in my knee. I've been living with this pain for going on 3 months now. Becoming more and more frustrated as it didn't pass like they did in the past. I started blaming it on the fact that I'm not 17 anymore, and maybe this is something that I'll just have to deal with. Not coincidently, my interest in osseointegration increased dramatically. Fast forward to today. New appointment with a new prosthetic guy (the old guy relocated to the other side of town.). He looks me over. Looks at the leg that his co-worker had made for me last year. We discuss the little piece of silicon that I brought along, wondering if we could make a little soft pocket or something. He's got a better idea ... He scratches his head a little and comes up with a small insert, between the outer/hard shell and the inner liner. This insert simply leverages the flesh over a little bit, probably no more than a millimeter, just above the sensitive spot. It is just enough to stop that spot from coming into contact with the inner liner. I try it on ... Angels Sing. Birds flap off to infinity. Somewhere, in the distance, a flower blooms ... you get the picture ... It honestly feels like I can breathe deeper, that I've lost a significant Chip from my shoulder. It's liberating to know that I no longer have to dread EVERY SINGLE step I take. ... ahhhhh .... (If you just scrolled to the bottom: Tell your leg dude/chick to cram stuff between the socket/liner.) OK. Osseointegration is still cool, but now I can stop looking for ways to self-perform the procedure with the tools in my garage! Thanks for listening ... and maybe it can help somebody with a similar ouchy-spot.
  4. Marc_L

    Scuba Diving?

    I'm NAUI Advanced certified. My instructor didn't do anything different for me than her other students. We did prefer the ease of boat dives, but if you've got a buddy that doesn't mind lugging your gear, walk-in dives are OK too. I'm AK, and just swim with one fin ... the prosthetic stays on the beach (or in the boat). I use an Atomic Split-Fin. It's a little large, but that helps compensate. I also use my arms more than most divers ... not necessarily for locomotion, more for stabilizing. Over time, I improved my stability by using my single fin in a slight figure-8 movement. In a straight line, I look like the ol' "Man from Atlantis" (anyone? Patrick Duffy? am I dating myself?) I love being in the water. It levels the bar ... I can swim faster than some of my bi-pedal friends.
  5. Marc_L

    Osseointegration Part One

    Thank you Paul for sharing this with us. You are one of the reasons that I finally subscribed to this Forum. I had to post in here to tell you how much I value the ability to experience this procedure through your posts. I must say that my current frustration with my relatively new socket really has me thinking about what it would take for me to undergo this procedure. IMO, the benefits outweigh the risks. Apparently the US has either approved it, or in the process of approving it, as there is another post in here, from January ... I'll have to go find it again and post a link ... For a while I thought I was going to have to fly to Europe to get it done, but while I would welcome the trip, I imagine that that could double the costs. Again, thanks for sharing.
  6. Marc_L

    Hiyas ... Marc here.

    Hello all! I've been reading this site for a few years now, but after finally exceeding the limit of threads that I wanted to respond to, I figured it was time to finally sign up! I look forward to interacting with y'all after lurking here for so long. I'm a left knee disarticulation. Sorry, but I don't know the appropriate acronym. It's not really AK or BK ... it's just @K. My story, in a nutshell ... Feb 1984, HS Junior ... auto/ped/auto accident (with me in the middle). Luckily, my right leg came away with a simple break (I still have the metal rod in my fibia). The left leg wasn't as lucky. After 13 operations over the next 18 months for nerve grafts and skin grafts and bone grafts etc., an infection showed up in the lower leg that we couldn't control. I had the disarticulation surgery over the summer between HS Graduation and my freshman year @ College. I got my first prosthetic leg a few months into my college freshman year ... and I think I'm on my 5th one since then. Over these 20-some years, I've been living inconspicuously amongst the bi-peds. Unless you went swimming with me, you couldn't really tell that I was a mono-ped. I can't tell you how many people that I've suprised at work. They'd known me for YEARS, but then finally ask me the "right" question that'll get me to spill the beans. Their jaws hit the floor. Now that I've pushed past 40, it's not as easy to go all day, 16+ hours, day after day after day like I used to. I'm getting so frustrated with my relatively new socket that I'm seriously thinking about how I could put my career on hold for a year or so while I go after an osseo-integrated unit. I hate how my day can be RUINED by a dime-sized sore spot that I have to feel, step after step after step. I think that a year of pain and re-hab would be worth it if I could toss out my final socket. I'm an electrical engineer by trade, SWM, ... somewhat of a nerd, video gamer ... but also into working in the garage on my Jeep mods and/or going hot-air ballooning w/ my pilot friends (I'm just crew, not a pilot). I love it here in the SW USA. I'm currently living in Arizona, but my heart is in New Mexico. Looking forward to getting to know y'all.