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Manual Wheelchair recommendation

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    Manual Wheelchair recommendation

    Hi, I'm new to the group (first post).
    My mum has recently been diagnosed with ALS after starting to show symptoms at the beginning of this year.

    It's progressed quite fast and she can no longer walk more than a couple of steps (with help to get her up from her chair onto her walker).

    We have a manual wheelchair and we've hired an electric one that has attendant controls. She has very little use of her hands, so she's not confidant controlling it herself.
    We're looking at longer term wheelchair options with neck support, tilt-in-space etc, and I'm thinking that with mum not being able to control the wheelchair herself, might a manual chair be better, so it's lighter weight for me to manage?
    I control her electric chair when we're out, but I'm not 100% confidant with it (I'm only 5ft3"), I feel more comfortable pushing her manual chair.

    I was wondering if anyone had any recommendations for a fully supportive manual wheelchair? and if there any any recommendations for some kind of detachable power assist on the occasions we do need it (is there such a thing for this type of chair?).

    Thank you so much.
    Nicky

    #2
    Welcome Nicky and Mum to exactly the right place for help, advice and support. I'm manual and can still walk albiet slowly with a wobble or two. Remember weebles? πŸ˜‰πŸ˜πŸ€—πŸ˜€xx
    Bulbar started Jan 2020. Mute and 100% tube fed but mobile and undefeated. Stay Strong πŸ€—πŸ˜˜πŸ€—πŸ˜xx

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      #3
      Hi Nicky, welcome to the group.Your mom’s OT or physio can make a referral to wheelchair services to advise on type of wheelchair that would suit your mom and then order via NHS.
      I waited 6 months for my powered chair and like your mom my hands are weaker.I mainly use manual chair which goes in back of my wheelchair accessible motability car.

      Hope you get the issue sorted soon.
      Best wishes
      Mary

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        #4
        Originally posted by matthew55 View Post
        Welcome Nicky and Mum to exactly the right place for help, advice and support. I'm manual and can still walk albiet slowly with a wobble or two. Remember weebles? πŸ˜‰πŸ˜πŸ€—πŸ˜€xx
        Thanks Matthew.
        Ah yes, mum has already described herself as a weeble that definitely does fall down!

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by Mary C View Post
          Hi Nicky, welcome to the group.Your mom’s OT or physio can make a referral to wheelchair services to advise on type of wheelchair that would suit your mom and then order via NHS.
          I waited 6 months for my powered chair and like your mom my hands are weaker.I mainly use manual chair which goes in back of my wheelchair accessible motability car.

          Hope you get the issue sorted soon.
          Best wishes
          Mary
          Thanks Mary.
          They did an assessment about a month ago and she was told she'd get an electric wheelchair, but it hasn't arrived yet.
          I think we may have to self-fund to get one in any reasonable amount of time.
          She's moving in with us soon - in a different county, so I'm sure that will complicate the NHS help even more.
          There is a great mobility place near to us though, so I might get them to come and do an assessment.

          Comment


            #6
            Welcome Nicky sorry to hear about your mum's diagnosis. Sounds like she's fortunate in having a very supportive family.
            I don't know enough about wheelchairs however there are lots of knowledgeable people on here and lots of previous threads about chairs. Technically I'm sure it's important to be fully measured up for the right chair as others have said in reply.
            Good luck πŸ‘
            Initial diagnosis 7-4-2021 'suspected MND' confirmed by 2nd opinion 4th June 2021 ALS. Began with R foot limp and lots of falls. Generally weak. Mostly terrified.​​​​​​

            Comment


              #7
              A warm welcome to the forum Nicky.

              Originally posted by Nicky View Post
              We're looking at longer term wheelchair options with neck support, tilt-in-space etc, and I'm thinking that with mum not being able to control the wheelchair herself, might a manual chair be better, so it's lighter weight for me to manage?
              Manual wheelchairs with recline, tilt-in-space function, head and shoulder supports make the chair bigger and, by default, heavier than regular manual chairs. But the good news is the NHS should supply it, probably instead of a powerchair, not entirely sure.

              You may be better sticking to a big brand such as Sunrise or Invacare etc, for a wider range of headrests, backrest and seat cushions. A chap I knew had an Invacare Rea Azalea chair and was happy with it - I just checked and it weighs 34kg! Mind you, his mum used to push the chair.

              Could your mum use head controls on a powerchair I wonder, or you'll have to hope your attendant driving skills improve πŸ˜‰

              Maybe your mum's OT could give advice?

              Love Ellie.

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

              ​

              Comment


                #8
                Hi Nicky, My mum was provided an electric wheelchair by wheelchair services and it arrived quite quickly. However, my mum's house is pretty difficult to navigate and with the tilt in space on the chair was really too long to go from room to room.

                We decided to continue using the manual chair provided by the NHS - she's now sadly not getting out of bed but the manual chair worked for us for many months.

                Over the winter my mum also had a power chair we bought privately from a disability shop (before we knew wheelchair services exists!!). That was great for outdoor use and even with limited use of her right hand my mum could control it. Sometimes if she got too tired I could walk next to her and help out.

                The NHS also provided some fantastic ramps so my mum could get into the garden.

                Hope you find what you need.

                Best wishes,

                Deborah

                Comment


                  #9
                  Thanks Ellie and Deborah, it's really helpful to get your perspectives.

                  It sounds like we really need to get her measured up, and to try the different options - manual and electric - to see how heavy they are for me.

                  I'll definitely get my husband involved in pushing when we're on longer walks, so hopefully it won't matter if a manual one is heavier than I'm used to.

                  Sorry to hear you mum is no longer able to get out of bed Deborah, that must be really difficult.

                  Thanks,
                  Nicky

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