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Heather Mills - Amputee Forum
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Hello,

Although I'm starting to feel a little repetitive, I guess this is just as good a place to start posting as any? My name is Johannah Garneau, I'm 29 years OLD and live in the U.S. I am a Psychologist by profession, single and NOT looking. :lol: I've been an amputee since 1995 and have adjusted pretty well, that is as far as I myself am concerned (My family thinks I need a husband). :lol: I live on my own, but do have someone who comes in and gives me a hand sometimes (was that in bad taste)? I lost my limbs due to pnuemococcal infection, what are the odds? My right arm is amputated approximately 5-6 inches from the shoulder and my left just above the wrist. Both of my legs were amputated above the knee, one only a few inches above and the other slightly higher after a revision. I wear prosthetic arms when I'm out or while I'm working with patients, but I prefer to not wear them at home (they're kinda hot an itchy sometimes). I have prosthetic legs too, but they are more cosmetic than functional. It's hard for me to balance for long periods of time, so when I use them I typically use crutches. Otherwise, I also use an electric wheelchair, because it's faster and more convenient. Again, at home I go "Au Natural", because I hate to be confined to my chair! Most of the time I'm able to get around my house just fine wearing small prosthetic (legs?) with small crutches and the help of step-stools everywhere! :lol: A friend of mine in the medical field told me about this site, so I came on to mostly just observe initially. Now I guess I'm an official "newbie"? Nice to meet you all... :P

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Howdy,

My real name is mike, i'm 48 years old, and i lost my left leg below the knee on 3-20-2003 in an accident in the steel mill where i work in pennsylvania. I worked for the same company since i got out of high school and this august will be 30 years. I am new to this computer business as i never really had time to learn about it before i got hurt. My real passion in life is the outdoors especially fly fishing for trout. It's been over a year since i've been able to go but everyone keeps telling me that i'll be able to do it again . If anyone reading this would like to share some fishing stories wioth me they will be greatly appreciated. Thank you for giving me this oppurtunity to join your group. God bless you all.

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In the summer of '02, I was diagnosed with a Giant Cell Tumor in my right tibia (lower leg bone). I had surgery done to remove the tumor and reconstruct the bone. Several months later the tumor recurred and I had to go to Pittsburgh, PA to have it resected. My knee joint was replaced with a metal LSP (limb salvage prosthesis). After about a year of battling infections, I was told that the LSP had to be removed. My options were fusion of the leg bones, which would leave me with no knee and a stiff leg, or above-knee amputation. My leg was amputated on May 11, 2004. Amputation was a difficult choice, but the right one for me. I joined the forum in April as part of my research on amputation and prosthetics. This has been a great place to get information and to communicate with wonderful people. :D

Edited by Bear Face

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Hi, my name's Lynn. I have a genetic disease called neurofibriomatosis. That means I have (usually) benign tumours all over my nervous system. I've had tons of problems with it, including scoliosis (curved spine ~ mine was a 90 degree curve) a phaeochromocytoma, (an adrenaline secreting tumour) and more besides.

Three years ago, one of the tumiours appeared on my brachial plexus. A big chunk of the nerve had to be removed, because the tumour was low-grade malignant. I lost the use lof the right arm and shoulder and the following year I hasd to have the scapula fused to the ribs underneath to help the pain. Then the year after that the original tumour recurred.

I have no yuse at all in my arm, so for all ibtenbts and purposes it has been amputated. It is very heavy, and I have to wear a skling 24 hours a day which pulls on my neck. Some days I feel like asking to have the asrm amputated, but I just don't know. I've been told a nerve transfer/transplant is out of the question.

I find life really hard, especially as I can't work any more.

Has anyone had any similar experiences?

Lynn

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Hi Lynn and welcome to the forum. :D

I'm so sorry that you have suffered so much in your life. I hope you enjoy the forum as much as I do! It is always here for you!

We have a few members of the forum who have NF too, like Eric ('ampskier'), Jaq and Josh (see posts by 'Josh's Mom'). I'm sure they'll be along soon to welcome you too.

Look forward to seeing more of your posts.

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Hello all, I'm a newbie here and have decided to post my story because its so different to the others. I had both legs amputated below the knees four years ago.

I have no one to blame but myself.

During the 90's I got well in to clubbing and using ecstacy. I knew some of the dangers of the drug but considered them to be so small and knew some of them to be false. I used ecstacy pretty much every weekend for about four years, had a great time,working fulltime and studying parttime.

In the summer of 2000 I went to Glastonbury festival with my mates and spent three days partying on ecstacy, magic mushrooms, speed and cannabis.

The result was I went up and stayed up for about three months before crashing down in to a very deep depression, the likes of which I had never experienced before ( or since.) Unable to cope with the depression I ended up living on the streets. Turning to alcohol to try and fill the empty space I felt inside me.

I fell asleep in a squat in Liverpool, how long I was out for I have no idea but I awoke to incredable pain and frost bite in both feet. It took me a couple of hours to be able to hobble to a phone box and call for an abulance. Both legs were amputated just below the knees.

I havent touched a class A drugs since, I'm a sillybilly not stupid.My life is now back on track, everything happens for a reason and these last four years have been a huge learning curve for me.

So thats me. I'm now back living in London and a happy bunny again. Enjoying the challenges life throws me living my life and loving it.

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Okay, I've got to hand it to you-that was a pretty big, Duh! Nevertheless, what's done is done and I'm glad to see you feeling good about your now and your later. Must get pretty cold in Liverpool? I think I'll stick to the tropics, prefer heat to cold, myself. Welcome to the forum-I bet you have some pretty interesting tales to tell and I, myself can't wait to hear a few. Later,

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Hi Silly Billy and welcome.

I suppose it is a case of living and learning and certainly a lesson for our youngsters take on board.

Then again who am i to talk, my problem can be aggravated by smoking. It usually affects older people, i was only 28 when my artery first blocked and didn`t smoke an awful lot so it was not actually put down to that. 10 yrs later cholesterol was thought to be the most probable cause. Either way i suppose it is down to an unhealthy lifestyle. I am cutting down the smoking but i admit i find it difficult, but i am not giving up on trying.

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Hi SillyBilly,

Welcome to our forum family I hope you enjoy your stay so pull up a comfy chair and enjoy yourself. As you can see we have a great supportive group here and have all kinds of post even the venting ones. Thanks for sharing your story as it was mentioned it might help someone that might be in the same situation. You have beaten the odds as drug and alcohol are very addictive but you found a way and turned it around so good for you!!! I look forward to reading more about you and please don't hesitate to ask questions or just post we are here to help each other. Again Welcome..

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sillybilly, your lucky to be alive after all that. I have just told my 11 year old your story. I do not see it as a problem talking to my girls about drugs like my parents did, and with storys like yours I can only hope that these little tip bits of information build up the correct attitude towards drugs.

I wish you all the luck in the world, even though you were silly it is very easy to see how you got caught up in it all. You are just young and having fun, and definately did not deserve to loose your legs to learn a lesson.

June

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SILLYBILLY

I'm from Liverpool, and while it is not the warmest place on earth, I've never heard of anyone getting frostbite here before. In fact, sometimes it gets quite hot! Maybe instead of frostbite because of the cold, it was caused by poor circulation due to drug and cigarette ingestion. Smoking can cause very poor circulation, and as an ex-nurse, I saw many people haveing BKAs because they smoked.

Lynn.

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Hi Silly Billy (What's your name?)

Oooooh...What a story!! I work with trainees who have been on the streets too and have now gone on to really change their lives - so I think all credit to you for changing the way you see things, and making your life as good as you can. What is past and done is just that - past and done, and we can't change it - but we can change how we move on. Well done to you. :P

Oh, forgot to say WELCOME.

Sue - Cardiff - UK :rolleyes:

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Hi sillybilly and welcome to our little corner of the world, where there are many friendly people willing to help, in any way possible. You'll find pretty much anything from A-Z here, along with a big smile attached. :D So feel free to ask away, vent, share you advice, or just chat, but most of all join in and have fun. :rolleyes:

I'm so sorry you had to come upon such bad luck in your life. However, you sure sound like you've got it together now and that takes a lot of courage, for which I applaud you. Hope to be reading many more of your postings.

Sheila LBK

Southern Maine USA

Keep Smiling :)

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Wow guys........just, wow.

What a nice welcome. Wasn't sure whot sort of reaction I'd get to my story,but never expected such an understanding reception. If only more people were like you guys.

Lynne, I'm positive it was frostbite. Wet shoes and socks being more to blame than Liverpool's tropical climate.

Again thanks to all for the warm welcome.

silly

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Hi Guys,

Havent been around for a while as Planning my wedding for may 7th next year!!

Its great to hear others stories, it make you not feel quite so isolated.

My fiance Steve, lost his right leg above the knee in february 2003 its a bit complicated how it happened so ill start at the beginning (a very good place to start!! :D )

Steve found out he was diabetic when he went into a coma when he was 17 when he had recovered from the coma he managed his diabetes well and got married when he was 22 unfortunately the marrage went sour that's when the diabetes kicked in big time, he lost most of his eyesight and is now registered blind, although he still works for himself as an architect. (has adapted his equiptment so he can see easier) he had bad bleeding caused by stress so he had to have thousands of laser burns at the back of his eye, at one point held the most in Devon UK.

Any way later i met him (and thaught he was georgeous!) and we movewd into gether, he Had already had his left big toe off just before i met him as he had stumped his toe and not thaught more about it and it then needed to be amputated.

He was recovering well from this and then discovered a big alcer on his right big toe he went to the specialist who advised there was nothing that could be done as he had got oestio militus in the bone (infection of the bone) and had to be removed, they decided to leave this as an open wound and let it heal outwards rather then stitch it up. He then had dailey visits from district nurses, after a few weeks the nurses said we should dress it and they would come just once a week, not knowing any better we did. It later became uncomfortable for steve and his foot began to swell so we went to the doctor who said it was fine and needed more excersise so steve bought an exersize machine and used it lots as he wanted to get better. This didnt do any good and it seemed to get worse the doctors now were getting quite stroppy with us and wouldn't test for infection just kep saying it was fine, we trusted the doctors but steve was getting worse and worse, he was sweating big time, and having hullusionations we tok him to the doctor every day only to be told he was fine.

Enough was enough and we took him to hospital where they said he wouldn't of lived another day and did an emergency amputation of his right leg above the knee. He had gas gangrene, something that should not still be about this day and age!.We got no appologys but later saw in the notes that the nurses suspected infection nearly 3 months before the amputation, just nothing was done.

So that's the story of how steve lost his leg. His diabetes has stayed fine through all of the infections so i dont beleive that that that caused his amputations.

Sorry its a bit long winded.

Kath

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Hi Silly, welcome to you, its a pretty amazing story you have to tell. I'm so glad you've come out the other side, your story could have had such a different ending. You sound more positive in your life now and I wish you good luck for the future.

Keep smiling :)

Love Pam

Northwich, Cheshire.

XXX

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Hi Kath,

Pretty tough luck Steve has had, but he's a very lucky guy to have met you.

My son is getting married next year so I know what an exciting (and busy) time this will be for you both.

Is Steve managing OK on his new limbs, let us know, I am waiting to go into hospital for my amputation and I am like a sponge, soaking up all the information I can get at the moment. Hearing other peoples experiences gives great comfort and the advice you get from others who have ' been there' helps a great deal.

Good Luck to you both.

Love Pam

Chehire.

XXX

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Sillybilly,

See I told you that everybody here would appreciate your honesty! And they sure have made you feel welcome. It's not every day that we get a new member that lives through something like what you have lived through. As Sheila said, I'm glad you came out the other side!

Welcome again from me too! :D Look forward to seeing more of your posts around.

Kat,

Thank you for posting the story of how Steve lost his leg. It's horrifying that such errors are made in hospitals today, in this day and age.

Just a thought: Maybe you might want to seek legal advice if you haven't done so already...??

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Welcome John! And welcome Kath (steve)! I have nothing useful to say, just wanted to say we love having more people here, to tell their stories, and share information with us. The bigger our pool the more we can help each other!

Judy

LBK

Utah

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Hi again,

I want steve to seek legal advice but he wont, i think he's gone through enough he dosent want any more hassle, also living in a small village he would have to travel at least 50 miles to go to another specialist which he dosent want at the mo.

He is managing fine with his prothesis, it is quite hard with him being registered blind. He is much better walking now then when he had his old real leg as he had his big toe amputated which affected his balance.

He's actually having his good foot dressed regularly now as he has an aulcer on the ball of his foot, this was caused by going up and down a ladder painting our 2 storey house!!! So being an amputee has not affected his activities atall!!

Speak to you all again soon

Kat (& Steve)

XX

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Hello Everyone,

My name is Karla. I'm a LBKA due to a lawnmower accident when I was 2. I'm now 30. I am currently in a nurse anesthesia program with less than a year to completion. I am excited to get to know people in similar situations and share ideas.

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Hey Karla,

Welcome to the forum. I hope you enjoy it here.

This site has helped me to find out so much about life as an amputee. There's nothing quite like going to see your prosthetist KNOWING what you want! There is so much available now for amputees, that it's just a matter of knowing what is out there.

Look forward to seeing more of your posts!

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I guess i'll add my story. Not very interesting though.

I lost my left hand 10 years ago working in a factory. I lost it working on a machine that was very popular for getting people severly injured. I was young and stupid wanting to prove myself so I took the job and the rest is history. I did make it a year before the accident. That was longer than the previous operators.

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