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Thread: Need advice about power assist for manual wheelchair

  1. #1

    Need advice about power assist for manual wheelchair

    Husband had a stroke in 2007. He has major left side neglect and can never use an electric wheelchair. He fell in 2013 and suffered a major TBI and helping him transfer is almost impossible now. I have a terrible time getting him into and out of the van to go to the doctor's office---or anywhere. I am looking at a wheelchair van with a ramp but I have a difficult time pushing him up the ramp into the van. What about a power assisted devise for his manual wheelchair that the caregiver (me) can operate it? Does anyone have any experience or suggestions? I have looked at the literature for e-fix and via mobility but have not been able to see how they really work. We have a Quickie 2 lite wheelchair.

  2. #2
    Senior Member elarson's Avatar
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    I think what you are looking for is an attendant assist? My husband also had strokes with severe neglect. His is able to manage a Spinergy ZX-1, albeit it very slowly and carefully, and I often need to help when getting onto a lift.

    Here are some links. Sorry, I have not managed to figure out how to upload photo's yet:

    Excel Click & Go 'Professional' http://www.vanosmedical.nl/uk/powerp...prx-162/ctx-27

    Otto Bock z10 / z10-ce: http://www.ottobock.com/cps/rde/xchg...xsl/30486.html

    ATT Movilino: http://www.aatgb.com/movilino_ad_on_...heelchair.html

    Benoit Solutions Light Assist: http://www.benoitsolutions.co.uk/light_assist.html
    Partner of an incredible stroke survivor. Limitations: hemiparesis and neglect (functional paralysis and complete lack of awareness on one side). Equipment: TiLite ZRA 2 and 2GX, Spinergy ZX-1, RioMobility Firefly. Knowledge: relative newbie for high-level equipment (2012), but willing to try to help others who are new with similar limitations (definitely not a guru, but inquisitive).

  3. #3
    I agree. A power wheelchair with an attendant control would appear to be the best option for you. I would be very concerned about your husband's cognitive ability to learn to use a power assist chair safely with the history you have given.

    Another option would be not to get a minivan, but to invest instead in a full sized van with a lift instead of a ramp.

    (KLD)

  4. #4
    If you decide to go with a power assist, I'm a C-5_C6 with limited mobility and I use SmartDrive.

    I'm also looking into getting one of these. http://youtu.be/TPXRT36IVq4

    Just thought I'd pass these options along.

  5. #5
    Senior Member elarson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bhandel76 View Post
    If you decide to go with a power assist, I'm a C-5_C6 with limited mobility and I use SmartDrive.
    About the SmartDrive, we considered it also, but found it much too difficult with hemimparesis (one sided paralysis) and neglect (not being aware on on one side). Everyone we talked to who had one agreed that it would probably not work well in our situation.
    Partner of an incredible stroke survivor. Limitations: hemiparesis and neglect (functional paralysis and complete lack of awareness on one side). Equipment: TiLite ZRA 2 and 2GX, Spinergy ZX-1, RioMobility Firefly. Knowledge: relative newbie for high-level equipment (2012), but willing to try to help others who are new with similar limitations (definitely not a guru, but inquisitive).

  6. #6
    Senior Member elarson's Avatar
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    About the Spinergy ZX-1, when assistance is needed, I lean over and run the controls, but that is not always easy, like when getting onto a lift. Possibly if attendant only control is needed you could consider mounting the joystick control on the back. It looks like that could probably be done fairly easily from what I can see. Maybe you could ask Spinergy what might be possible for that with the ZX-1. What we like about the ZX-1 is that it is not on the chair when not needed, and is easy to take off. My husband does not use it in the house much, and there are times he can't get over a door sill, and then we will disengage it. It means not having all of the added weight on the chair when he manually propels. Oops, I just went to look and see that the Quickie 2 is a folding chair. The ZX-1 will not work with folding chairs, because it engages to the camber tube.

    I see that with the e-Fix Plus you can get a separate Attendent Controller. Of the links I sent earlier, I think the Otto Bock z10 would be a good option too. Here is a link to the Otto Bock z10 brochure: http://www.ottobock.com/cps/rde/xbcr...B-02-1006w.pdf. I live in Europe, and Otto Bock is a solid Germany manufacturer, though I don't know how easy things are in the US for them (not sure where you are located). Who knows, maybe he could even manage to use the Tiller Control on the z10-ce some times. My husband is able to use the RioMobility Firefly (http://riomobility.com/en/firefly) with one hand as long as he goes slowly.
    Partner of an incredible stroke survivor. Limitations: hemiparesis and neglect (functional paralysis and complete lack of awareness on one side). Equipment: TiLite ZRA 2 and 2GX, Spinergy ZX-1, RioMobility Firefly. Knowledge: relative newbie for high-level equipment (2012), but willing to try to help others who are new with similar limitations (definitely not a guru, but inquisitive).

  7. #7
    Agree with SCI Nurse that full sized van with lift on side or rear would enable you to assist him. The power wheelchairs have option of rear controller for the attendant. Perhaps it could be on a pendant of some kind as you would be on ground level, powering him up, then getting inside van to connect lockdowns for the chair.
    Another issue to look at for van situation would be headroom for entry if floor is not dropped. Is he tall, for example, etc. These issues would be looked at by having a van evaluation by someone certified for this.
    The van modification company can provide a name for this person (the evaluator is not an employee of the van modification company).

  8. #8
    Senior Member elarson's Avatar
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    Another one might be the e-drive by Decon (Sweden) http://www.decon.se/sida61.html, which also has operating controls for caregivers. It is a lot like the e-Fix with the power on the wheels.
    Partner of an incredible stroke survivor. Limitations: hemiparesis and neglect (functional paralysis and complete lack of awareness on one side). Equipment: TiLite ZRA 2 and 2GX, Spinergy ZX-1, RioMobility Firefly. Knowledge: relative newbie for high-level equipment (2012), but willing to try to help others who are new with similar limitations (definitely not a guru, but inquisitive).

  9. #9
    Senior Member elarson's Avatar
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    I just found this Australian site that lists most that were on the site I mentioned below https://www.ilcnsw.asn.au/minor_groups/216/list/1

    Glide Power Assist

    Merits P001A Power Pack

    Quickie iXpress

    Quickie Xtender Power Assist

    Rolleee Power Pak Wheelchair

    TGA Wheelchair Powerpack

    --------------------------------------------------
    I just found this website that lists "Add-on systems to power assist a manual wheelchair - attendant operated" http://www.dlf-data.org.uk/products....=1220&sortname. Prices are in GBP ? which is currently 1.66 USD $.

    **Note** After you view a few of them they require you to subscribe, so maybe just jot down the names before clicking around too much.
    Last edited by elarson; 02-26-2014 at 03:33 PM. Reason: added information
    Partner of an incredible stroke survivor. Limitations: hemiparesis and neglect (functional paralysis and complete lack of awareness on one side). Equipment: TiLite ZRA 2 and 2GX, Spinergy ZX-1, RioMobility Firefly. Knowledge: relative newbie for high-level equipment (2012), but willing to try to help others who are new with similar limitations (definitely not a guru, but inquisitive).

  10. #10
    Senior Member elarson's Avatar
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    I just saw this about the new Yamaha JWX-2 power-assist: http://www.mobilitymgmt.com/Articles...eelchairs.aspx

    I've heard many who like the JWX-1, but I've always found it hard to find information about it that is not in Japanese.
    Partner of an incredible stroke survivor. Limitations: hemiparesis and neglect (functional paralysis and complete lack of awareness on one side). Equipment: TiLite ZRA 2 and 2GX, Spinergy ZX-1, RioMobility Firefly. Knowledge: relative newbie for high-level equipment (2012), but willing to try to help others who are new with similar limitations (definitely not a guru, but inquisitive).

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