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Heather Mills - Amputee Forum
Halleycomet

What do you use when your leg is OFF???

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Hi this really isn't a "poll" altho topic title reads like one. I am helping my "Leg Guy" help a patient of his who like me is a BK with balance issues. She is an elderly lady who is trying to decide on an "appliance" that will help her get around outside of the house. I don't know what level of activity she is planning i.e. casual or more extensive but she is active in her planning---not sitting around at home all day from what I gathered meeting her!

She has been looking for something for a while now and had seen something that might be called an "EdSim"---does this ring any bells? I think I saw a brochure a few years ago and it looked like a pogo stick with a bicycle seat welded on. Did not look to me at all stable for someone who was not athletic or who had balance issues. This item allegedly costs something like $6000. For the price of a decent used car I feel the thing ought to walk FOR you but that is my opinion! On request of my "Leg Guy" I took my RollerAid to his office and had her try it---I used it for months pre-amp, with and without casts, and of course afterwards and now I used it at night and to get into the shower---I am not one to take off my leg ---once it is on in the AM it STAYS on til I go to bed or shower.

Guess what I am asking here is---BESIDES a wheel chair or a motor scooter what do YOU use, how do you like it---pros and cons!---and where do you get it? You would THINK that the prosthetists would ALSO sell these things but there seems to be a big gap between what is---or is NOT avail---to people at a medical supply house or catalog and a pros office. Surely there is a market and a NEED for this stuff---why are they NOT selling these things????

Looking forward to being able to pass on---and scrutinize for my own possible future needs!---what you clever folk have come up with. Thanks!!!!!

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Slide on my backside.....honestly. It sure doesn't look vef=ry ladylike...hope we get some answers as I am tired of doing this.

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Your timing on this is most apropo. I'm out of my leg for 4 weeks due to minor surgery behind my knee. I started using crutches. They hurt the ribs and shoulders. I use a wheelchair around the house. More comfy, but cumbersome. I bought an IWalkFree hands free crutch. Very simple to use, but exhausting. I don't think your patient would do well on it as it takes some balance and you really can't get in and out of the car with it.

For someone older, I would not recommend anything but a chair or scooter. Safety first!!!

Simply said.....I want my leg back!!!!!!! three more weeks.

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I use forearm crutches for almost 30 years at night or when my leg is off. Under arm crutches can cause nerve damage if you lean on the armpit.

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Well, I'm somewhat "older" and not in possession of much of a sense of balance. When I can't wear my leg (fortunately, that happens very rarely), I rely on a wheelchair. I've never been good on crutches. When I was new at this, I also used to use a frame walker to balance on while I "hopped." I don't recommend that one, though...in my case, it caused so much stress on my arms, shoulders, and neck that it caused bleeding in my eyes and led to three months of virtual blindness. Blind and newly one-legged and living alone...yeah...that was lots of fun!

I think if I really had to be off my leg for an extended time, I'd stick to the wheelchair. Once I got my sight back, I managed to go roaming all around town in my "hot-rod" wheelchair!

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Well, I'm somewhat "older" and not in possession of much of a sense of balance. When I can't wear my leg (fortunately, that happens very rarely), I rely on a wheelchair. I've never been good on crutches. When I was new at this, I also used to use a frame walker to balance on while I "hopped." I don't recommend that one, though...in my case, it caused so much stress on my arms, shoulders, and neck that it caused bleeding in my eyes and led to three months of virtual blindness. Blind and newly one-legged and living alone...yeah...that was lots of fun!

I think if I really had to be off my leg for an extended time, I'd stick to the wheelchair. Once I got my sight back, I managed to go roaming all around town in my "hot-rod" wheelchair!

THANKS ALL!

The patient is in her 80's and does not have good balance---I am not sure why she suddenly "needs" another way to get around---her house is set up so she can use a chair to get around at night or if she needs to have a break from the leg. I am understanding that she doesn't want to use the chair when she is out of the house---I don't know if she is using a power scooter (like I do) when she is going somewhere but I also have to think that her husband is ALSO in his 80's and may not be able to heft a wheelie scooter---and lots of people don't know that you can get ramps to get stuff in and out of the car and that the scooters can be driven from the side so you don't have to sit on them and have headroom etc. Also did not see what kind of car they had.

I completely sympathyse with her wantinmg to be more independent tho---it drove me NUTS when I couldn't walk when I injured the leg and the six week after surgery using ONLY the chair---well they shoulda just put me in a coma for that time!!!!

I will have to keep "scouting" around to see if I can at least find the item she was looking at---which I personally think would require the strength and agility of an Olympic Gymnast. But there are days when I think that just getting to the kitchen requires that so maybe it's just ME!!!!

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I use a walker at home, I find this better than crutches since I find that crutches keep falling off, when I rest it against the wall..I find that a lil bugging. When I feel like I want to be independent, I hop around on my right leg, beware, this can be tricky! you can easily slip and fall if there's any water on the floor.. i think hopping is best when done on a carpeted floor. When I'm out of the house, I use my elbow crutches.. I still haven't mastered climbing stairs with two crutches, although I can climb stairs with one hand on the railing and one hand on the crutch; I find it a very safe and easy way of climbing stairs, although for this you would need someone else to hold the other crutch while you are climbing.

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Um yup think after a below knee amp AND a partial foot amp on the GOOD foot I am pretty familiar with a walker!!!!

As to my friends patient---as far as I know she doesn't have the balance and strength to use a walker with out her leg---I don't either come to that---I don't think she is interested in using one with her leg on as I do sometimes. Where we live winter is extremely harsh and using a walker in the snow and worse the ice is a huge problem. And even in the summer month we have cracked and buckled sidewalks---IF we have sidewalks as it is rural here---due to winter frost heaving. This means that if you are walkering along and hit one of these cracks or buckles the walker comes to a dead halt and the user can be slammed into the walker or even tipped forward or backwards. Very scary! Gravel is also a big issue and all too common here. Walkers hate gravel!

One of the things the patient was thinking of using was a ROLLERAID---you can Google em up----since this offers a much more stable and less tippy means of getting around when her leg is off for whatever reason. I have been using one of these for several years both before and after I had my amp surg. This lets you get around in an upright position so you can be getting the walking you need to stay healthy and also you are meeting people on a face to face level---very important. It folds to go in the car and is no wider than most peoples shoulders so you can go pretty much anywhere unlike in a wide or bulky wheelchair. At home I use it for nights to get to and from the bathroom and shower as my bathroom is not wheelchair accessible AT ALL. It has also come in handy when I needed to be without my arti leg---like when I injured the bone and couldn't get the leg on. I would not be able to live in my house without this or something similar as it is totally NON accessible to a chair. My ins co paid to rent it for months---paying what the item cost several times over---pointless spending as I obviously will need SOMETHING for the rest of my life right???---until I finally managed to persuade them to just buy the darn thing for me. The RollerAid co also sells them outright and at a major savings they will sell you a re-conditioned one. Cheaper than a wheelchair too. There are a few other wheeled sort of things to off-load a leg, I tried a few and even tho the RollerAid is not perfect it is far easier to use and steer than the other models out there.

What I was hoping some one had experaince with here was something called---I think!---a SimLeg or similar---you sit on a raised seat and propel the pole like thing around. Any takers????? Can't find this anywhere yet I KNOW I saw a brochure somewhere!!!!

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Since the person is in her 80's, that is best a Health Care Professional perscription showing medical necessity, preferably a Physiatrist or a Physical Therapist.

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