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Info request: forearm crutches - at home use only

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    Info request: forearm crutches - at home use only

    I have MS. I have a TR3 chair I use when I leave home; it's great. I walk at home (inside and outside) to keep leg atrophy at bay. About six months ago I started needing a cane to walk. Now on some days a cane isn't enough - sometimes I'm scarred to walk without more support.

    I'm thinking of getting forearm crutches. SideStix are way overkill for me; I'll be using crutches only on some days walking in my house with stairs and yard with slopes. What's a good brand and feature set for my intended use? I've seen so many choices online, I'm overwhelmed and uneducated. I plan to ask doc tomorrow for a PT evaluation appt; I just want to be educated before that appt.

    TIA
    Chas
    TiLite TR3
    Dual-Axle TR3 with RioMobility DragonFly
    I am a person with mild/moderate hexaparesis (impaired movement in 4 limbs, head, & torso) caused by RRMS w/TM C7&T7 incomplete.

    "I know you think you understand what you thought I said, but what I don't think you realize is that what you heard is not what I meant."
    <
    UNKNOWN AUTHOR>

    #2
    Personally I think you are way overthinking all this. I bought a pair of $25 el cheapo Chinese fore arm crutches from an eBay store. I adjusted them to just below my elbows and so I could stand a straight as I could and then used them. They do stabilize my arms and hands to assist with my walking. Basically that is all any crutches can do. Help with your stability, and take some of your weight. I cannot see for the life of my why anyone needs all kinds of advice for something like crutches, or to get an insurance company or Medicare pay some way inflated price for them. Someone, somewhere, has to try to put a stop to waste, and stuff like this is my ever so minor contribution.

    Sorry if I sound harsh, but stuff like this just irks me.

    Comment


      #3
      Thank you. I get caught up in all the fancy product offerings/marketing out there. I appreciate the reality check
      Chas
      TiLite TR3
      Dual-Axle TR3 with RioMobility DragonFly
      I am a person with mild/moderate hexaparesis (impaired movement in 4 limbs, head, & torso) caused by RRMS w/TM C7&T7 incomplete.

      "I know you think you understand what you thought I said, but what I don't think you realize is that what you heard is not what I meant."
      <
      UNKNOWN AUTHOR>

      Comment


        #4
        My Dad is a crutch walker.

        Take a look at WalkEasy. Reasonably priced, but very good quality for the money. Your PT will be familiar with them.

        I would not go overboard and buy pricey crutches at this point. Figure out how you like them, see how you manage pain-wise/wear&tear wise.
        However, crutches can take a beating, depending upon how you walk, your weight/height, so the quality of the materials/design is important.

        Crutch walkers develop shoulder problems and carpal tunnel syndrome from the stress on those joints with crutch walking. Good hand grips that are ergonomic, with shock absorption in the grips and/or the crutch, and optimal crutch design for your height/weight is important. My father is a big guy and puts a ton of weight on his crutches. He beat his Walk-Easy pair into the ground within 2 years and needed to replace them, and those are pretty good quality. Crutch walkers will often need to replace their crutches and tips over time. If you are only using them in the house, this will be less of an issue.

        My Dad has SideStix now, and loves them. They will last him for the rest of his life.

        Comment


          #5
          Thanks, hlh
          Chas
          TiLite TR3
          Dual-Axle TR3 with RioMobility DragonFly
          I am a person with mild/moderate hexaparesis (impaired movement in 4 limbs, head, & torso) caused by RRMS w/TM C7&T7 incomplete.

          "I know you think you understand what you thought I said, but what I don't think you realize is that what you heard is not what I meant."
          <
          UNKNOWN AUTHOR>

          Comment


            #6
            I love my WalkEasy forearm crutches. Like you, I don't ambulate enough to justify the expense of the more customizable brands - but for my needs around the house, grocery shopping, etc., WalkEasies do great. They're extremely lightweight, but they can support up to 250 lbs; they come in several attractive colors, they are fully adjustable, and you can pick from several styles of cuffs and handles. WalkEasies are very affordable, too. The website is http:www.walkeasy.com.
            MS with cervical and thoracic cord lesions

            Comment


              #7
              Fetterman's Tornado tips to put on the crutches are also a favorite.

              Comment


                #8
                I used these when I could walk some. Durable, simple and not expensive



                http://www.fetterman-crutches.com/cr...rand/index.php
                Last edited by Lynne; 19 Jun 2016, 9:51 PM. Reason: correction of site

                Comment


                  #9
                  Thanks bunches everyone
                  Chas
                  TiLite TR3
                  Dual-Axle TR3 with RioMobility DragonFly
                  I am a person with mild/moderate hexaparesis (impaired movement in 4 limbs, head, & torso) caused by RRMS w/TM C7&T7 incomplete.

                  "I know you think you understand what you thought I said, but what I don't think you realize is that what you heard is not what I meant."
                  <
                  UNKNOWN AUTHOR>

                  Comment


                    #10
                    I use Side Stix. You're right though, they cost a fortune but they will last forever because I can replace any part that breaks or wears out. No matter which brand you choose, make sure you put Tornado Tips on them. They are much safer on wet surfaces than any other tips I've found.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Agree with hlh and briddelim - the Tornado tips are must-haves. If the crutches you select don't come with them, you can order them separately from most crutch websites.
                      MS with cervical and thoracic cord lesions

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Thank you! I have called my primary doc's office to request PT appt. They plan to call me back after speaking with doc. Last week I fell hard, and went to ER where doc told me to get better walking support than just a cane.
                        Chas
                        TiLite TR3
                        Dual-Axle TR3 with RioMobility DragonFly
                        I am a person with mild/moderate hexaparesis (impaired movement in 4 limbs, head, & torso) caused by RRMS w/TM C7&T7 incomplete.

                        "I know you think you understand what you thought I said, but what I don't think you realize is that what you heard is not what I meant."
                        <
                        UNKNOWN AUTHOR>

                        Comment


                          #13
                          My neurologist once remarked that most people with MS get around with supports that are one level less than they need for safety. At that time I, too, was using a cane - then, like you, I began to have falls and realized I needed to rethink things. Forearm crutches added a welcome measure of stability, almost like having four legs instead of two. They're not good for all terrains, they're very slippery on wet surfaces (hence the need for Tornado tips), and they don't entirely prevent falls as MS progresses - so it's good you have a chair, as well (so do I).

                          Another mobility aid that has really helped me is a four-wheel rolling walker with hand brakes and a basket with a lid that turns the walker into a chair. I use the walker for tasks around the house like fixing dinner, brushing teeth, etc. because crutches are always clattering to the floor and you can't carry anything while you're wearing them. You can buy totes that attach to the crutches for carrying small things like a book, pad or phone, but transporting cooking supplies is out of the question - you need to keep your hands on the crutch grips, there's no hooking them over your arm like you can do with a cane.

                          I'm glad that you have an appointment with a PT. There's a bit of a learning curve with crutches, but it's not too steep and I'm sure that they will be a huge improvement over the cane.
                          MS with cervical and thoracic cord lesions

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Thank you, Bonnette
                            Chas
                            TiLite TR3
                            Dual-Axle TR3 with RioMobility DragonFly
                            I am a person with mild/moderate hexaparesis (impaired movement in 4 limbs, head, & torso) caused by RRMS w/TM C7&T7 incomplete.

                            "I know you think you understand what you thought I said, but what I don't think you realize is that what you heard is not what I meant."
                            <
                            UNKNOWN AUTHOR>

                            Comment


                              #15
                              WalkEasy + Tornado Tips here, too - MS for 22 years. I tried a couple of other brands (that I can't remember right now - one was a super fancy Dutch travel crutch), and I always come back to WalkEasy because they are LIGHT-LIGHT-LIGHT and they don't make noise. I prefer full cuff to half cuff because of the problems Bonette mentions with carrying things.

                              Comment

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