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Thread: Are crutches only for lower level injuries

  1. #1

    Are crutches only for lower level injuries

    Im t-6 and I think I really would be more productive if I could get out of this chair. Are crutches and leg braces a possibility for me?

  2. #2
    Senior Member foton's Avatar
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    Hello,
    The decision about you using leg braces should be made by your doctor. Theoretically, you should be able to use KAFOs. Remember, it is not easy though. I am T12 complete and using KAFOs and crutches for the past 10 years. I use them more than chair (probably 60% of day in braces and the rest in the chair ).. Still walking for longer distances is very hard. I use through-gait style of walking. I have lived in the city and I work in the office. It is much easier for me to move a little bit in braces than in the chair. Especially if you have to get out of the car just to buy milk. Putting the chair back and taking it apart after few minutes takes longer just "jump" out of the car in braces.
    Many people whom I know, some from this forum, ordered braces and were very disappointed. It may look easy from the distance, but in reality it is hard and time is needed to use to them. It took me a year to get phisically fit to take advantage of wearing them.
    You are T6 complete or incomplete? Also, what do you mean by being more productive?
    Last edited by foton; 03-09-2012 at 01:35 PM.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by foton View Post
    Hello,
    The decision about you using leg braces should be made by your doctor. Theoretically, you should be able to use KAFOs. Remember, it is not easy though. I am T12 complete and using KAFOs and crutches for the past 10 years. I use them more than chair. Still wlaking for longer distances is very hard. I use through-gait style of walking. I have lived in the city and I work in the office. It is much easier for me to move a little bit in braces than in the chair.
    Many people whom I know, some from this forum, ordered braces and were very disappointed. It may look easy from the distance, but in reality it is hard and time is needed to use to them. It took me a year to get phisically fit to take advantage of wearing them.
    You are T6 complete or incomplete? Also, what do you mean by being more productive?
    I assume I'm pretty complete. I have some trunk control but no sensation. I Kno it's hard work but if it's do able I'd like to try. I'd be less dependent and thus more productive...

  4. #4
    Senior Member foton's Avatar
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    Eric.S,
    Talk to your doctor then to get in touch with rehab facility in your area. They will asses you and maybe let you try the generic braces just to check how you will feel.
    I do not know any of T6 para using them daily, but I know many T12 ones. I was born in Europe were using braces is the only way to leave the house in many places

  5. #5
    So is t-6 to high for braces and crutches?
    Last edited by Eric.S; 03-09-2012 at 08:50 PM.

  6. #6
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    I tried walking with braces for many years after my injury - I use an AFO & a KAFO plus a walker (never felt very confident with loft strand crutches). I found that it really hurt my back to walk using them, I have rods in the lower thoracic area, as well as a fusion. In hindsight, I think it might have been better to use two KAFOs, although the AFO made it easier to stand up with bent legs, the difference in support meant I often stood kind of twisted. I also had to thrust my hips forward to balance well, which aggravated my hips frequently (and I'm having lots of hip issues now, wondering if they're connected).

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by jgrant27 View Post
    I tried walking with braces for many years after my injury - I use an AFO & a KAFO plus a walker (never felt very confident with loft strand crutches). I found that it really hurt my back to walk using them, I have rods in the lower thoracic area, as well as a fusion. In hindsight, I think it might have been better to use two KAFOs, although the AFO made it easier to stand up with bent legs, the difference in support meant I often stood kind of twisted. I also had to thrust my hips forward to balance well, which aggravated my hips frequently (and I'm having lots of hip issues now, wondering if they're connected).
    What's your level?

  8. #8
    I think T6 is too high, you don't have the trunk control.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by t8burst View Post
    I think T6 is too high, you don't have the trunk control.
    Damn it!!!

  10. #10
    Senior Member NW-Will's Avatar
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    I'm T4, no trunk control, no hip flexors... I tried KAFO's waste of time and energy and gave me a whole slew of bad habits, plus completely non-functional.

    I moved onto RGO's, if you're motivated and want to stand and hobble around, they seem the best solution$$$ I've come across.

    One of the advantages over KAFO's I can stand and rest, take as
    many steps as I want rest etc. With no help from anyone else.
    KAFO's I always had to have someone ready to brace me when I
    wanted to rest.

    An old thread with a couple of old youtube videos for comparisons.

    http://sci.rutgers.edu/forum/showthread.php?t=156658

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