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Heather Mills - Amputee Forum


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About mcatlin

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  • Amputation Cause:
    Ankle Arthritis
  1. mcatlin

    reconstruction recovery

    Hello- My name is Monte and I am a rbk ertl as of Sept. 2009. Just wanted to let you know that you are very early into this process. Please get your time frame more into a year process and you will be more reseptive to how new you are. Even with all my ankle surgeries I found anytime you mess with the bones you are looking at at least 6 months for pain to resolve. My thought on the ertl is that you are not trying to bear lots of weight on the end. The bridge just stabilizes the Tib/Fib to allow greater bearing throughout the limb. I only bear about 15-20 pounds out of 190, but have nice even load carry along my whole stump that makes for a nice ride. If you are bearing to a point of discomfort on the end time for a sock layer or a new socket. My first year I went through about 15 sockets as I shaped down. So try to find a leg guy that is willing to constantly work with you. Once your shaped down things will be great for you.
  2. mcatlin


    I'm a BKA. I am a firefighter/emt. I am also a commercial pilot and run a small air charter. I have all kinds of high activity hobbies including alpine and cross country skiing, snowshoeing, backpacking, mountain biking, ect.
  3. Hello, In Sept. 09 I joined the BKA club following many years of ankle surguries due to a motorcylce accident. At the time I had been a fireman for about 17 years and was unsure how my job situation would work out. With lots of support from here and home I was able to return to full duty the following July (2010). My coworkers have asked me to join them again this year to compete in the Seattle Scott Firefighter Stairclimb. This is an annual fund raiser for Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. It entails climbing 69 flights of stairs in full firefighter gear and breathing with the airpack. It is very grueling but a friendly competition for bragging rights. The best I can tell, I will be the first amputee firefighter to ever compete in the event. If you are interested in supporting a great cause the link below will take you to my donation page. Monte http://www.llswa.org/site/TR/Events/General?px=1464040&pg=personal&fr_id=1161
  4. Great motivation! Thanks for posting.
  5. mcatlin

    does anyone regret an elective amp

    Not sure what other options you are given. As for me, I was told to either not put weight on my right foot if it hurt or try to mask the pain with pain killers. So being active this seemed like an bad way to spend the next few decades. I am only about 4 1/2 months past my surgery so time will only tell. Of course it is a drag having to contemplate some actions of the day, but I was doing the same with the real foot for the past year or so. For me it seems like things are progressing every week and feel like I am better even now than on surgery day. I would never wish the decision on anyone. However, life is just to short to let a foot hold you back. I am sure some of the AK's and Hip people just roll their eyes at us BK's. It really seems possible to do anything you would want to do with a BKA. But only you know how bad your foot is and how hard you are willing to work to return to a "normal" level for yourself.
  6. I am a 4 month below knee amputee. I also went the route of sub-talar fusion without sucess. After 5 years of monkeying with it, it was enough for me. When I started down my path I found numerous other ankle fusion patients that had there fusions fail after about 5 years. So even if you have a sucessful fusion, if your are fairly active the fusions tend to fall apart. With that said it is a huge change. I read a timeline that I keep reminding myself of: At 4 months you wonder what in the world you did, but you are about where you were pre-surgery. At 6 months you have a mental breakdown but resolve that you can make it work. At 1 year you are glad of your decision and gettting back to most of your activities. So for me at 4 months I am walking pretty good and getting back to outdoor activities on a limited basis. It is a total pain dealing with the volume changes but they are starting to stabilize. But I look forward to Sept. 2010. Seems very plausible that things will be going great by the end of summer. Make sure you find a surgeon that specializes in amputations.
  7. mcatlin

    Knee presure for BKA

    Thank you for all the insights.
  8. Hello- I am 4 months post op and into my 3rd temp. socket. My volume changes have started to moderate to about 3 ply's throughout a long day. I try to be as active as I can (walking 2 miles a day, down hill snow skiing, snow shoeing, general homestead project, ect). I have what I assume is the KISS system from others discription. I also have a long stump and a bone bridge. I have two questions: 1. How much weight should be on my patteller tendon? Seems like my knee is starting to get pretty sore by the end of the day. If I try to add sock ply's it seems to really start hurting my bridge area. 2. How much knee bend should I expect? I have been try to increase my stair climbing and have a hard time bending my leg (I have full range of motion without prosthetic on). My leg guy is reluctant to trim the back down. It appears to me that the socket, liner and suspention sleave all get bounded up behind my knee. Any tricks?? Thank You
  9. mcatlin

    Shave Hairy Stump?

    WOW DAVE!! I will definately give it a try if cutting the hair shorter doesn't do it.
  10. mcatlin

    Shave Hairy Stump?

    I am a new BKA as of the end of Sept. I have fairly hairy legs and am getting alot of tenderness from the hair being pulled by the sleeve. Should I trim the hair shorter, shave the leg all together, or just keep using lotion to decrease the friction? Any other tips would be great as well. I have been getting around pretty good and trying to walk a couple miles a days but hair issue is starting to drive me nuts. Thank you for imput.
  11. mcatlin

    New BKA

    Thank you for the input. I have been working with a prothesis and happy with thinks so far. I did find the topic of "pantom pain" farther down and found that to be insightful. Most of my sensations are tollerable with an accational lightning bolt that sit me straight up. I was glad to see your timeline was fairly quick. Monte
  12. mcatlin

    New BKA

    Hello- I had a RBK last week following 17 years and many surgeries for a broken ankle. I am very excited for the future. I am fairly active and work as a Fireman in the Seattle area. I am having cramping that feels like it is in my arch and toe areas. Is this the phantom pains? How long till it calms down a little? And any info on rehab timelines would be helpful. I know everyone is different, but would like to know what I can expect generally. Thank you