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Thread: Power chair

  1. #1
    Senior Member JEAPOW's Avatar
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    Power chair

    I was injured coming up on 2 years now, and my PN is getting worse along with my balance. I miss out on so many things because I simply can't walk very far at all with my cane any more.

    I saw an add for the Scooter Store for a power chair, but I know nothing about what is a chair, I wanted a real light weight one I could put in the trunk, but Medicaid won't pay for that because it is more of a scooter.

    Any suggestions I would be really grateful. I do not have enough arm strength for just a regular wheel chair, guess I knew this day would come, I just really thought I would walk again and get stronger. I just had another second opinion from a new back specilaist and he said he concured with my neuro, I am not going to get any better, I thought just stab me in the heart, he was cold and could not wait to get me out of his office.

    I am tired of hearing well you could be so much worse off, well I feel like the Drs are saying I am headed that way. Can still get in the pool, my PT is already capped for this year, and it was more stim and heat than exercise.

    Thanks
    JeAnNE L1Burst Fracture inc. 11/5/10

    Live Well--Laugh often

  2. #2
    Hi Jeapow, I'm sorry to hear that you are having such difficulties! I don't have any advice on a chair. However, as I get more into this SCI existence, I realize that we all do what we can to get around. If you're missing out on things, a chair will certainly help you get back into life. Maybe you can still walk and keep your strength when at home or familiar surroundings. On any given day, I use 2-3 different mobility methods....whatever works at the moment. I hope you find the right chair for you circumstances. More than that, I hope you find a way to live comfortably and allow your vibrant spirit to soar.

  3. #3
    None of us have the power for the wheelchair in the beginning. You will be stronger but maybe you should try to get the wheels with the battery if you are afraid you are not strong enough. It is not very heavy to wheel the light weight chairs except when it is uphills.

    I understand very well how bad it is to walk all the time. But with a powerchair you will not get any exercise at all. You are tired now but with a chair it will be better after a while and as a para I bet you will prefer a small manuell from a big heavy powerchair
    TH 12, 43 years post

  4. #4
    You will not be able to lift any kind of powerchair safely.
    There are scooters and rehab chairs. Rehab chairs are heavy and expensive and can only be justified based on in-home need. Sounds like a scooter would be sufficient for you. I don't know what the criteria are for those, but you can't qualify, I would look for a used scooter (they have very little resale) and a lift platform for the back of your car. Basically the same setup many elderly folks have. You should be able to get set up for under $1000.
    If the need is primarily to go shopping, call the store when you get there and have someone bring out one of their scooter to you.

  5. #5
    Senior Member JEAPOW's Avatar
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    thank you for the advice, I filled out a survey from the Scooter store and have been flooded with phone calls for a free power chair.

    I liike the idea of a light weight wheel chair, but can you add a battery pack to it.

    I am not ready to sit in a chair all day until I have too right now I can walk a little ways with my cane, and am able to drive. My PN is getting worse and thats mostly my mobility.

    Think I need to talk to my DR about what he thinks is best for me.
    JeAnNE L1Burst Fracture inc. 11/5/10

    Live Well--Laugh often

  6. #6
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    Hello Jeapow, I had the same problem with my insurance, i walk with a walker and wanted something to get around for longer distances. i ended up with this cute scooter i got from amazon for 700 dollars new. its a mobility scooter and i even got free shipping. i can lift it out of my suv but my husband is there to help , there is a lift to get it out but i dont have one yet. hope things go better for you i know how hard things can be to get around. take care

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by JEAPOW View Post
    I like the idea of a light weight wheel chair, but can you add a battery pack to it.
    Yes there are portable/removable power packs for manual wheelchairs. Search the internet for "power packs for manual wheelchiars." You will find several options.

    Ask your doctor for a referral to a physical or occupational therapist who can access your needs and make suggestions.

    All the best,
    GJ

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by JEAPOW View Post
    I was injured coming up on 2 years now, and my PN is getting worse along with my balance. I miss out on so many things because I simply can't walk very far at all with my cane any more.

    I saw an add for the Scooter Store for a power chair, but I know nothing about what is a chair, I wanted a real light weight one I could put in the trunk, but Medicaid won't pay for that because it is more of a scooter.

    Any suggestions I would be really grateful. I do not have enough arm strength for just a regular wheel chair, guess I knew this day would come, I just really thought I would walk again and get stronger. I just had another second opinion from a new back specilaist and he said he concured with my neuro, I am not going to get any better, I thought just stab me in the heart, he was cold and could not wait to get me out of his office.

    I am tired of hearing well you could be so much worse off, well I feel like the Drs are saying I am headed that way. Can still get in the pool, my PT is already capped for this year, and it was more stim and heat than exercise.

    Thanks
    J,

    Medicaid nor Medicare will pay for a power chair or an electric scooter unless you cannot walk safely in the house. They don't care whether you ever go out of the house or not. Ask Cheesecake how long it took her to get her manual wheelchair approved and she will tell you 2 years. There are lots of others here who have had the same experience.

    I know 2 years seems like a long time but it really isn't.

    You can get stronger if strength is the only issue that is keeping you from getting a manual chair. It is extremely tough on people here to even get the manual chairs they need from Medicaid or Medicare. When they evaluate you for the chair strength will not matter too much.

    Somebody else said they got a mobility scooter from Amazon. I have had several scooters over the years and had to buy them myself. I am getting ready to buy a smaller one so I can use it to go shopping and other activities that require alot of distance. I have a huge outdoor one for yardwork and getting around the yard but it is just to heavy to load in the back of the car to go to the mall. I too have been missing out on so much because I just can't enjoy myself after walking so far. I do still walk around a flat block where I am living just so that I get daily exercise. This is so important...I can't stress how important this is just from personal experience.

    I would encourage you to keep walking or rolling. I know pain is tough but you will deteriorate physically if you don't get some form of exercise. I know this from my own experience.

    Good luck
    T12-L2; Burst fracture L1: Incomplete walking with AFO's and cane since 1989

    My goal in life is to be as good of a person my dog already thinks I am. ~Author Unknown

  9. #9
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    Scooter Store Scam

    Before you do anything else, please google "scooter store scam"!!

    Also keep in mind that you won't be able to get a scooter into many places that a power chair will go, for example through the aisles of some stores, etc. In my opinion a power chair is much easier in the big picture.

  10. #10
    Senior Member JEAPOW's Avatar
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    not ready to give up yet

    Thanks for replies, met with my regular MD on Fri. and he pretty much agrees keep on walking with cane and do as much as I can to keep muscle strength. No guarantees Medicare will pay whole cost. He said he would do what ever I wanted. So I am going to wait and now deal with all the calls from the Scooter Chair store. Wish I never would have even contacted them..I also thought about looking on Craigs list for small scooter for times when I can't do all the walking.

    My Dr wants to handle all my drugs including pain meds because right now I have like 4 different Drs and it probably does not look good. They can see though I don't double dip my scripts. We talked about a spinal stimulater?? I looked it up and dang it is another procedure. 5 surgeries in two years is enough for me. My neuro surgeon released me though saying he did all he could do as far as what they have fixed, I feel like I have been cut right in half!! Guess now it is narcotics to handle pain, he was very understanding at least I really trust him. Said it would be years before they would ever be able to touch PN pain nerves just do not come back at least he was honest and not just well there is nothing more I can do I am releasing you find a pain mngt Dr like my neuro said. Guess he just likes surgery and not the after care and like I have read I am coming up on 2 years ans am getting worse.

    Again thanks for replies...
    JeAnNE L1Burst Fracture inc. 11/5/10

    Live Well--Laugh often

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