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Thread: Cushion recommendations

  1. #1

    Cushion recommendations

    I am getting a new waterproof cushion for a manual chair. Any advice?

    Is it better to be firm (e.g. like the Permobil cushions) or soft? Thick or thin?

    I have not had any pressure sores so far and want to keep it that way.

  2. #2
    I have (2) the ROHO. Five years and there great.

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Desert Mountaintop
    I tried two kinds of Rohos (including the one with the four chambers) and had difficulty adjusting air pressure and getting them to work. Got sores.

    On the other hand, I really like my Evolutions. Great and user-friendly.

    Keep in mind, you need to patch any air cushion as soon as it gets a leak, or you will get a sore - it's like having no cushion at all.

  4. #4
    Senior Member rdf's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Someplace between Nowhere and Goodbye
    What kind of cushion are you using now? That might be the way to go, if they have the type you need.
    Quote Originally Posted by xsfxsf View Post
    I am getting a new waterproof cushion for a manual chair. Any advice?

    Is it better to be firm (e.g. like the Permobil cushions) or soft? Thick or thin?

    I have not had any pressure sores so far and want to keep it that way.
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  5. #5


    "... cushion for a manual chair. Any advice? ... Is it better to be firm ... or soft ..."

    Based upon a cursory look at your situation as referenced here and elsewhere in this forum, air-type cushions (e.g., Vicair, Roho, etc.) may not be ideal for you, particularly in the matter of transfers. Stability in transfers is; generally, best accommodated by using foam, honeycomb, or gel/fluid type cushions. Among these types of cushions, foam - all foam - cushions are the least effective in preventing pressure sores when prolonged cushion use is necessary. With respect to cushion efficacy, honeycomb cushions (e.g., Stimulite) are substantially more effective than all-foam cushions, and honeycomb cushions provide good stability during transfers. There is a relatively new fluid/foam cushion called the Jay Union cushion that offers good stability during transfers while exhibiting significantly greater cushion efficacy than all-foam cushions.

    The Jay Union cushion; however, lacks the breathability, lightness (i.e., weight), and reduced height (ref. your "Thick or thin?" inquiry) of many otherwise comparable honeycomb cushions. The needed cushion thickness is; in part, a function of the cushion's material, the softness and stability desired, the sore-preventing efficacy for a given user's weight, etc.

    The "water proof" factor that you mention is most easily accommodated by the honeycomb type cushions, but can; of course, be achieved by any cushion type with a waterproof cover. Note that using a truly waterproof outer cover necessarily eliminates the breathability factor associated with a cushion.

  6. #6 ...its like a styrofoam on the bottom and reg foam on top half..they mapped me for pressure spots....great cushion..they r in south florida so dont know how they deal with customers outside area as far as pressure mapping goes
    - Rolling Thru Life -

  7. #7
    Junior Member chubby2's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Washington state
    Roho....Thick & thin,C3-4,6yrs,never a problem.

  8. #8
    The best cushion should be decided by a physical therapist who does seating evaluations and can do a proper pressure mapping. I would go on someone else's opinion. Your seat cushion is probably the most important part of your wheelchair besides the wheels. The wrong one can land you in bed for months. Good luck on your quest. I've gone with several different cushions that didn't work out right and landed me in bed or with surgery.
    C-5/6, 7-9-2000
    Scottsdale, AZ

    Make the best out of today because yesterday is gone and tomorrow may never come. Nobody knows that better than those of us that have almost died from spinal cord injury.

  9. #9
    I use a varlite pro with psv vent .using it 4 2 years now .and iam very satisfied .iam a spastic with sensation and a urin incontinence .but whats good for me doesnt have be good 4 raybread says dont underestimate the importence of a good seat cushion.i fully agree

  10. #10
    I've been in a chair for almost 19 years and my first cushion was a Jay but within the first six months from the time of my injury I regained some feeling in my butt and found the Jay cushion to be very uncomfortable. I changed to an Invacare Uti-Mate (foam type) and have used it ever since. Although I do replace my cushion every 2 years and so far no problems.
    SCI Birthday: April 25, 1993
    T4,5,6 Incomplete
    Chair: TiLite TR3

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