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Anyone else have trouble with elevators?

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  • Anyone else have trouble with elevators?

    ok, I've got a part-time job that will soon be full-time.
    right now, someone drives me to/from work, but I'm going for an eval and will have my van modified with high tech driving controls.
    The main door to work does not have a remote opener but my employer will fix that.
    for the most part I'm on my way to independence at work, BUT I work on the 2nd floor and I can't operate the @%$&*! elevator buttons! It is my Road Runner!

    I'm a C5 Quad, but that is only after some recovery. I spent almost 2 years as a C4, therfore I don't have the strength / flexibility of someone who has always been a C5.

    I am currently trying to use a stick with a vinyl tip to push the buttons, but I can't push hard enough to trip the button. Because of my leg rests, I can't get close to the wall so my arm is really stretched when I try to press the buttons.

    Any suggestions?
    Some days it's just not worth chewing through the restraints.

  • #2
    I know exactly what you're talking about. Try this:

    Instead of trying to push the button with part of your hand, try to use your elbow. Pull in so your shoulder lines up with the front of the elevator, you might just find that your elbow can easily find the button. Sometimes the button is too far away, but if I maneuvered my chair (like turning your chair into the side that the buttons are on at an angle, but still keeping the buttons to the side lined up with your shoulders) or leaned a bit , it did the trick. Quite a few times I found myself still in the doorway, so don't pull all the way in because the doors might shut and you might need the room behind you to get your elbow close enough to the buttons. You should have strong enough shoulder muscles to do that. I am a complete C5. Now I have the help of my service dog Dexter.

    Let me know how you make out. Good luck!

    -Lewis
    C5 injury with partial C6 function on left.

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    • #3
      How high is the button and how high can you raise your arm?

      http://homepage.mac.com/bradd/Menu9.html

      Brad

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      • #4
        How many floors does the building have? Where I work, the elevator button is heat sensative...you only have to get about 1/2" from the button and it turns on. This can be done with your elbow or any body part. In addition, since we only have two floors, whenever anyone enters the elevator it automatically senses this with an electric eye and actives the button for the other floor. At a another rehab center that I know of they have 3 floors, and the elevator automatically stops at each floor in succession. This would be a reasonable accomodation by your employer as you must have access to your office.

        (KLD)
        The SCI-Nurses are advanced practice nurses specializing in SCI/D care. They are available to answer questions, provide education, and make suggestions which you should always discuss with your physician/primary health care provider before implementing. Medical diagnosis is not provided, nor do the SCI-Nurses provide nursing or medical care through their responses on the CareCure forums.

        Comment


        • #5
          what is your job?

          Comment


          • #6
            sorry about the delay...it was a much more beautiful weekend than expected.

            I can lift my arm as high as my shoulder, I'm working on getting better. My problem is strength once my arm is stretched out. The button requires constsant pressure, I can't just "whack" it and have it work.

            My building has 3 floors Ground, 1, and 2. I enter on the 1st floor and work on 2.
            Thanks for the info on the thermal button...that's good info.

            I'm now working as a software engineer. I program in C for a subcontractor to the FAA. We are working on the next generation communication link between the ground and aircraft. Pretty interesting stuff.

            Anyone know if there is funding available for employers to modify the workplace?

            Thanks for all the feedback!\
            Some days it's just not worth chewing through the restraints.

            Comment


            • #7
              if it does not mean major high cost to fix the elevator, and it shouldn't, your company should fix it. thats the law.

              Comment


              • #8
                I use a lift that required constant pressure on the button. The lift manufacturer replaced the wiring and button so it was a button that only had to be pushed once. It should not be expensive to fix.
                Andrew [img]/forum/images/smilies/smile.gif[/img]

                "You can stand me up at the gates of hell
                But I won't back down"
                Tom Petty
                So there we were, Two against ten thousand.
                **** we killed those two!!

                Comment


                • #9
                  Lewis is a genius!
                  My elbow worked on the 2nd attempt.
                  Hooray for small victories. Now I need to work on moving into the elevator quicker...right now I have someone hold the door for me.
                  It's amazing that something as simple as pushimng a button could put me in such a good mood...now if only the Flyers could make it past the 1st round of the play-offs!
                  thanks again, everyone.
                  Some days it's just not worth chewing through the restraints.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    On most modern elevators the delay time for door closing is very easily adjusted. Ask your manager to discuss this with your building manager or maintenance people and contact the elevator maintenance company to arrange this. They should also know about how to set up the electric eye arrangement that I mentioned before for the interior elevator controls.

                    Companies that put in accessibilty improvements are eligible for tax benefits. It is their responsibility to provide and pay for them though, both for employees and for customers. If they are an FAA subcontractor they also come under Federal access regulations as stringent or more stringent than the ADA.

                    (KLD)
                    The SCI-Nurses are advanced practice nurses specializing in SCI/D care. They are available to answer questions, provide education, and make suggestions which you should always discuss with your physician/primary health care provider before implementing. Medical diagnosis is not provided, nor do the SCI-Nurses provide nursing or medical care through their responses on the CareCure forums.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      You made my day! I'm glad to know what works for me has helped you. I like to keep things simple so they may be used in other environments as well (other elevators).

                      When I was recovering at the Shepherd Center in Atlanta last year, I ventured off on my own and got stuck in a elevator that was rarely used. I waited for awhile for someone to use the elevator, but after a few minutes I started trying everything possible. That is when I found out how useful the elbow is, not just with elevators but for pushing many buttons. Just be careful you do not cut your elbow.

                      SlomoScott, your recovery is encouraging to know since it has been two years. Keep the progress going!

                      -Lewis
                      C5 injury with partial C6 function on left.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        SlomoScott--
                        Off topic, but what input device do you use with your computer?

                        "I will drive the lane,
                        I will drain the three,
                        I will finger roll,
                        but the one thing I will not do is FADE AWAY"
                        "I will drive the lane,
                        I will drain the three,
                        I will finger roll,
                        but the one thing I will not do is FADE AWAY"

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I used to interact w/ my computer only w/ Dragon Natrally speaking (even when I started programming!), but then I was able to move my arms enough to type. There are not any really good typing aids in my opinion, so I Frankensteined one into being. I originally purchased some of the brown plastic "slip-on typing aids" and bent them so they were contoured for my hands. I had an occupational therapist glue some splinting material on for support and so I could strap them around my wrist. They worked OK, but what I'm using now is much better (I've tried to attach a picture, hopefully it will work). They are made from 2 layers of 1/8 inch plastic splinting material, you can mold it with heat. They are contoured to slide under my wrist braces and stay in place all day at work (6+ hours). The nice thing is that they are not very obtrusive and can be removed easily.
                          I also use a "shorty" keyboard to free up some desk space along with a regular mouse. I am unable to use the standard mouse buttons, so I use the switch click from Tash with 2 external buddy buttons (blue and white in picture). If you order the switch click, make sure you specify that you want to control both left and right buttons, the standard is left only.
                          Let me know if you have any questions...
                          Some days it's just not worth chewing through the restraints.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Have you tried using the Kensington Expert Mouse? It has 4 buttons. I use them for:
                            1. right-click
                            2. drag
                            3. single-click
                            4. double-click
                            I require splints similar to yours.
                            Andrew [img]/forum/images/smilies/smile.gif[/img]

                            "You can stand me up at the gates of hell
                            But I won't back down"
                            Tom Petty
                            So there we were, Two against ten thousand.
                            **** we killed those two!!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I use the Kensington Expert Mouse as well. [img]/forum/images/smilies/smile.gif[/img] Works great!

                              -Lewis
                              C5 injury with partial C6 function on left.

                              Comment

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