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Patient turner

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    Patient turner

    Hi all
    I have been looking at patient turners as transfers are getting very difficult for my husband. He can stand up but the few steps from chair to wheelchair are very difficult, especially the sideways movement. I did a bit of midnight research (something different every night it seems) and came across the patient turner. I am just wondering if it’s possible to use one without arm function. My husband wouldn’t be able to hold on to it at all. At the moment I put the chair Or bed right up and help him to stand up, hold on to his arms and he shuffles round. Some days his legs just don’t want to move at all, especially on the bathroom lino. Does anyone have experience of these? OT coming on Friday so I want to have all the info before she gets here. I find they often haven’t come across the equipment so it’s good to do the research yourself first.
    Thanks in advance.
    The Patient Turner is a well designed and constructed moving aid that assists with safe and easy transfers from one seated position to another for both user and carer alike.

    Enables one caregiver to transfer patients safely and with ease. Building on the success of the Sara Stedy, we are pleased to introduce Sara Stedy Compact: a standing aid that caters to smaller-sized patients and residents. For safe and easy every day transfers - Promoting mobility, support and

    Hmmm Bexx, I don't think that type would work if hubby couldn't support / steady himself with his arms - I have no arm function and cannot see how I could safely use that turner unless maybe with a sling / support belt around my bottom?

    What I do use for my transfers is a simple turntable like this:


    I can weightbear long enough to transfer but, as I have no balance, I need to be supported for the transfer. This video gives you an idea of what's involved: (it's not the brand I buy but it the 'how to' you're looking at)

    video, sharing, camera phone, video phone, free, upload

    Also there are transfer belts (aka gait belts) which can be useful:

    Transfer Belt.jpg

    I use a sit-to-stand hoist to get from by bed to a shower/loo chair and, even though I can't grip the handles, the sling around my upper body provides support, allowing me to use it. (I'm not suggesting your husband is at that stage yet!!)

    Have a look at the video of the Sara Stedy - do you think it'd work with a transfer belt (i.e. you helping him stand, providing he has good leg strength to initiate a stand, you should not lift him) and would he have the core strength and balance to stay upright? I like that it has a seat but am aware it might not suit many with MND due to balance and core strength issues.

    I don’t want to upset you in the slightest Bexxy but be prepared for the OT to suggest it’s time for a lot of equipment/mobility aids. Friday’s visit might be hard but ultimately, your husband’s safety is paramount, as is yours - you don’t want to put your back out!!

    Take care.

    Love Ellie.
    ​Diagnosed 03/2007. Sporadic Definite ALS/MND Spinal (hand) Onset.
    Significant bulbar impairment - No functional limbs - No speech - Feeding tube - Overnight NIV - Eye gaze user


      Ellie, you are a star, as always! Sometimes the simplest solutions are the best. I was definitely over complicating it with that contraption which, I agree, would not be appropriate with no arm function. I just hadn’t come across the turntables. I have ordered one now for less than £15. Brilliant!
      Yes I suspect you are right that more equipment is imminent. Yes it is upsetting when it arrives but more than that it is a relief. My back is already done in. My husband is over a foot taller than me and several stone heavier.
      Thanks again Ellie.


        Stick some rubber grips on one side of the turntable so it won't slip on the floor as his weight goes off it - we use grips for furniture legs.
        ​Diagnosed 03/2007. Sporadic Definite ALS/MND Spinal (hand) Onset.
        Significant bulbar impairment - No functional limbs - No speech - Feeding tube - Overnight NIV - Eye gaze user


          Great tip. Thanks


            Hi Bexx,

            So sorry you've got a bad back and transfers are so tricky. It must be really hard for you both. I often think how hard it would be if it was the other way round for us because my husband does so much lifting and holding chairs securely for me to slide onto.( I better stay friends with him!)

            I tried a Sara Steady but did not have enough leg strength for me to feel secure but it could work well for you both. It sounds really strange but I transfer with a silky sheet ( snoozle from Amazon !) which hubby puts under me so I can move across easily from bed to chair. You do need to do this slowly so you dont slide right off... We have a no talking rule !!!

            Do take care of yourself. It's a good idea to research equipment and aids before meeting your OT. Mine has been happy for me to try things and then ask for them to be taken back, or at least she seems happy.

            Love Debbie x


              Hi Debbie.
              Yes we often talk about what it would be like if it were the other way round. My husband is always saying “how would I cope if it was you? I’d never be able to take such good care of you.” And I am always saying “if it were me I’d be complaining day and night, crying, having temper tantrums and feeling sorry for myself!” So we have different perspectives
              I think the turntable should work well so long as it doesn’t spin too easily. We may have a few interesting dances whilst we master it!
              Take care


                Well the OT ordered two types of patient turner, the Sara steady and the reTurn. Sadly it was instantly obvious they were not going to be any use. With no arm function they are just not possible to use. So after being delivered today they will be collected tomorrow and a stand aid hoist will be delivered.
                Any tips on the stand aid hoist? We will need a four point sling due to no arm function. Will it be possible for him to use this without holding on? All the photos show the person holding the bars.

                Also Ellie we got the turntable and found it good to begin with but I am struggling to lift my husband to standing whilst keeping one foot on the turntable and then holding him up whilst slowly turning the turntable with control and then lowering him down whilst continue to hold the turntable with my foot. It’s not as simple as it looks! Any tips?

                Also we were hoping the patient turner would be useful for getting in the car. Obviously that’s not the case so any tips on getting in and out the car?

                Thank you for your invaluable help.



                  I use a 2-point sling on my standing hoist with my arms by my side because honestly, the hoist does the lifting rather than the person actively pulling themself up, in combination with the act of standing up. There is probably a better way of explaining it - you'll have to test drive it yourself!!!

                  I'm sure a 4-point will do the job, I don't know where the other 2 attachment places are on a standing hoist.

                  Re turntable: when someone is helping me to stand, they don't put their foot on the turntable. It's placed quite near to me, knees bent at 90deg so my feet are centred and my weight as I'm stood up, keeps it in place, then the person uses the front part of their foot to turn it. I'm concerned that you're doing quite a bit of actual lifting - can your husband initiate a stand and push up, even if it's not full strength? - you might need to use the hoist for safe transfers and to protect yourself.

                  I use the turntable from my wheelchair to the car for now - we don't have a WAV.

                  Good luck with the hoist and, as I said on another thread, don't think hubby has to stick with a sling if it isn't comfortable as there are lots of sizes and types - mine is padded (fake) sheepskin !
                  Last edited by Ellie; 24 June 2020, 10:58.
                  ​Diagnosed 03/2007. Sporadic Definite ALS/MND Spinal (hand) Onset.
                  Significant bulbar impairment - No functional limbs - No speech - Feeding tube - Overnight NIV - Eye gaze user