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Messages - waqas

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1
General Discussion / Re: Hello
« on: May 26, 2014, 08:14:02 AM »
Hi guys and apologies for such a late reply. As you all know as started trialling the legs a while back but in November 2013 my prosthetist made an application for funding to the NHS for the Orions (apparently and according to all the tests we did, she said they preformed the best which I did not agree with, I think it was a bias opinion as she works for the Orion manufacturers lol).

I was not complaining as she has been a great prosthetist  and anything would have been better then the TotalKnees. We heard back in March that funding request was denied on the following grounds:

The panel considered the case carefully and noted the following:

1.     There is currently a policy in development which will determine NHS England commissioning arrangements for prostheses, including microprocessor prostheses.  Advice from the Programme of Care Lead is that no microprocessor prostheses are currently commissioned for new patients pending this policy.

2.     The panel considered the arguments for clinical exceptionality put forward in support of this request and recognised that this patient has poor gait and mobility and that he has a need to transfer to adult knee prosthetics.  They also noted that the currently commissioned prosthetics would be the usual option for this patient.

3.     The panel considered whether there would be an identifiable cohort of patients who would also wish to use microprocessor prosthetics.  Although this patient may be unusual in having quadrilateral amputation, the panel could not know that there wouldn’t be others in similar circumstances, wishing to have microprocessor prosthetics for perhaps different but equally legitimate clinical reasons.

4.     Although this patient has had an opportunity to trial microprocessor prosthetics, with reported good effect, the panel felt that a decision to fund this patient would pre-empt the assessment of the clinical and cost effectiveness of microprocessor prosthetics currently being carried out by the Clinical Reference Group.

Regrettably, the IFR Panel did not agree that the IFR should be funded.


It was extremely heartbreaking as I was wheelchair free for the first time due to the bionic legs, but that's the way of the game I guess. Apparently the Clinical Reference Group should decide about funding soon (but soon can be imminent or next year on the NHS) and I will be at the top of the list for whatever bionic limbs they decide to fund.

In the meantime they were thinking of putting me on either the VGK or 3R80's.

I'll keep you updated.

2
General Discussion / Re: Hello
« on: August 19, 2013, 07:32:20 AM »
Hi guys!

Just a last update as I got to try the Plie 2.0 again so I thought ill give my response and the read can see the difference between all three  of the major MPC Knees.

As stated previously the Plie's were the most responsive of the three and after having it tweaked a little it was as secure and stable as the others but I think, though I am no longer certain that the Orion might have been the most stable, but only by 5% if that (don't ask me how I came up with the 5% figure, it's a gut feeling :) and by stable I mean that I can stand up straight and the knees don't start to bend until I lean into them).

I did find that the battery lasted as much as the Clegs being active on them and wearing them 16+ hours a day so the Orions win in respect of charge hold. However I like the fact that I can charge the battery on the Plie separately and do not need to be bound to a charging socket like the Cleg and Orions. I was still able to walk on the Orions when the battery died and they were very stable even though the knee was in the locked position.

Ow and they felt the lightest of the three and I also got drenched at a theme park and the legs worked perfectly fine due to them being water resistant to an extent.


For me personally it has proved difficult to decide which leg to go for but I have ruled out the Cleg as its almost identical to the Orion and does not support foot attachments from other suppliers. I was torn between the Orion and Plie as they are same almost in performance value and it came down to what features I was interested in which were as follows:

Orion:

It has a better charge hold by almost a day,

I can set it into a locked position for such things as driving/flying etc.

Plie 2.0:

Battery can be easily charged and you can carry a spare (don't need to be tied to the socket),

Most responsive,

Waterproof.

For this reason I would like to go for the Plie 2.0 but it all depends on my PT and funding request.

I hope this helps those in a similar position and do make sure that you try before you buy, and  don't follow the leader so to speak as they are all very similar and your choice will boil down to your activity level and what you want from the legs.

Waqas

3
General Discussion / Re: Hello
« on: June 21, 2013, 11:22:51 AM »
Sorry again but I am really bad at remembering to give updates on forums.

I tried the C legs for 2 weeks and the guys from Ottobock spent the most time with me, by a long shot in comparison with the other two leg manufacturers. They spent a total of a day and a half with me (compared to a few hours with the others) where they kept adjusting the legs height, speed and a lot of technical stuff (including standing on some huge metal plate with some lasers to get my centre of gravity and posture alignment correct so I can benefit from the tech in the knees).


As a result of the extra time they spent teaching me how I should be moving to get the best out of the knee I did find that I could tackle slopes/ramps easier than the other two legs but I think this was more the confidence built over the course of trying all the limbs and the extra time Ottobock took showing me how I should tackle ramps etc.

I did find that the battery would run out very quickly in comparison to the other two and give me a maximum of two days and 1-1.5 days of intense walking.

In comparing all three legs I found that there was no real performance difference between the Orion and Cleg as both had a similar speed, stumble recovery and would keep up with the changes in my speed well. The Orion has the advantage of a better battery life and another plus point is that I can have a hydraulic foot/ankle of any other manufacturer that can theoretically work with the knee. In comparison the Cleg will not allow you to use any product from another manufacturer with their knee and they currently do not have a hydraulic ankle so I won't be going with the Cleg.

I have not reviewed the Plie 2.0 as of right now as I can not give an honest and full review as it was the first microprocessor leg I tried and proved to be more of a learning curve as to what was possible with the technology compared to my total knees. I have asked my prosthetist to try them again so I can see exactly what the performance is like and have another trial booked for mid July.


What I can tell you briefly is that the Plie 2.0 were the most responsive of the microprocessor legs and I liked the battery life and charging style but I did not feel as secure on them as the knee seemed to flow very easily. This could have been because I was not used to the legs or the resistance on the knees was not set right but the retrial will let me test it out again.


Well there you have it and it's out of the Orion and Plie for me. Surprisingly I was set on the Cleg for a long time before trialling any microprocessor legs due to the amount of people recommending them, the publicity they have had, and the stupid assumption that the more it costs = the better it is, but my experiance is that you try each of the legs thoroughly and go with what you feel is the best for YOU.

If you have any questions, please ask.

Waqas

4
General Discussion / Re: Hello
« on: May 31, 2013, 01:38:01 PM »
Hi guys and sorry for the late reply but I am currently on the Clegs and tried the Orions about 2/3 weeks ago.

One thing I would like to add is that the Plie 2.0 was my first step onto microprocessor/bionic limbs and as such, it was a huge change for me both physically and mentally (in trusting the legs)and having now tried both the Orion and currently trialling the Cleg I think I may ask to try the Plie one more time  to give me a concise idea of what limb would be best suited to my needs. Below is my review of the Orion.

The guys from Endolite came and spent around 2/3 hours with me and got up and going, doing slight adjustments here and there using the built in bluetooth in the legs. One of the big difference I found was that the knees felt alot more sturdy and safer in comparison to the Plie 2.0. With the Plie I found that if I was standing up straight with my legs side to side or leaned slightly against a object that the knees would bend and I would loose balance and had to re-posture myself so to speak; with the Orions the knees have good resistance that I can don't loose my balance and make me feel safer (so to speak).

The knees keep up with my walking speed but I think that the Plie were more responsive, just a tad. It was however easier to go up and down slopes/ramp with the Orions due to having that extra resistance in the knees which made life easier.

A plus point I found was that the battery on the Orions lasted for around 2.5 days, the Plie were a good 2 days too, however I did not like the fact that the legs had to be plugged directly in to charge unlike the Plie where I could remove the battery and were also waterproof.

When it came to give them back after the 2 week trial the guy from Endolite brought a hydrolic foot/ankle (not the advanced microprocessor one, I think it was the Echelon) for me to try for 30 minutes just to give a taste of what can be achieved if you have the right components (plus the funding of course). Let me just say that for me as a BAKA, it was a huge change once more as I could feel the microprocessor knees and foot/ankles working together and they made a huge difference when going downhill. I tackled a 15/20 degree ramp on the hydrolic ankle using a walking stick and it was literally like walking on a level surface and took all the effort and concentration out of walking. This is something I would not have attempted without using a hand rail and a few weeks of practice.

Ill give a full Cleg review on the 4th/5th of June.

Regards

Waqas

5
General Discussion / Re: Hello
« on: March 19, 2013, 01:34:16 PM »
LOL no worries, I get to try all three, C-legs, Plie 2.0 and the Orion. Then let my PT argue my case and hope for the best.

I don't have insurance as it was a loss due to illness and here in the UK you don't need medical insurance really as the NHS takes care of everything (through taxes) but the downfall is that you have to wait for technology to drop in prices and get a little out of date, and I do not think its possible to buy insurance or anything along that line to cover new prosthetics such as the Genium etc or I wouldn't hesitate to pay for it.

Once the funding is approved, my PT told me that they will then try to get me the BeBionic 3 as its been so long that I've had my  miyo and I should have a good shot.

As for the back pain, you are right, tuck your bum in and chest in to get a straighter posture and walk as such and the pain starts to away and you are left with a better posture as a result. Unfortunately for me, it's going to take time as I've been walking badly since the age of 14 (at the time I did not care what the physio was saying as I just wanted to get up and be independent asap and look normal, now I want a natural walk and do as many activities as I can, don't care about what people think and as such I will not be covering my legs or hand up with artificial skin etc ... can't wait)

6
General Discussion / Re: Hello
« on: March 19, 2013, 07:58:36 AM »
Just gave the Plie 2.0 back and now have to wait to get the C-legs.

This is my brief experience on the legs in comparison with the Total Knees.

My posture has/had changed totally whilst I was on them, I was no longer sticking my arse out and leaning forward. Instead I had to straighten my posture which made walking on the legs easier and efficient; as a result I had a natural gait (no where near perfect as I had developed a bad walking habit over 12 years so it will take time) and it got rid of my back pain.

The legs were able to keep up with my speed, surprisingly well though I did get the odd jerk in one of the legs.
They are silent and flow smoothly.
Charging is easy as you just remove the batteries and charge them separately.

Downside is that you can't walk backwards and you can not tell how much battery power you have left.

7
Answering the subject I would say that had I not lost my limbs, I would have never pushed myself as hard as I do, gained the confidence to face people and speak up for what I believe in. Having lost my limbs at a young age, I became more mature than other people my age, was great for all life has to offer and take life one step at a time in its fullest.

8
General Discussion / Hello
« on: March 04, 2013, 05:00:25 PM »
Hello everyone

At the age of 15 due to Meningitis I lost both my legs above through knee and right hand including the tips of my fingers of my left hand. I am almost 27 now and since I lost my legs I was on your bog standard legs with Total Knees.

I always saw posters of people rock-climbing, riding bikes, skiing and running with their limbs but I believed that was all sales propaganda to make you believe you could do anything; why, because all of them featured an individual with either below knee or single leg  amputation, and IMHO had life so much easier due to having a knee or one leg as it makes a huge difference.  Youtubers like Randyhanger and Giuseppe Chessari have been really inspirational to me as both are bilateral AKA and show what is possible

Anyway after several years of pestering my prosthetist has finally said I should be able to get funding for micro-processor limbs from the NHS. Obviously the Genium is not on the list but I have been told that I will trial the C-leg, Orion and Plie 2.0.
I developed a bad habit of walking with locked knees on the Total Knees as ever time I would lean too forward, it would trigger the knees to bend and I never got comfortable walking with free flowing knees as I used to fall all; as such I used to keep them locked as I felt more secure and could walk faster (though 12 years of walking like this has led to bad posture).

Today I was given the Plie 2.0 to try out for a few weeks, and it feels so weird to walk on them as the knees do not lock and I have built a fear that if the knees don’t lock, I will fall. Its going to take time but my posture has improved already (and its only day 1!) , I have a more natural walk and can control the speed I walk and the legs keep up.

So far I am impressed by them and hope I get on as well with the others too, only problem is that I favour my left leg more and I am not confident doing slopes and have noticed that when going down slopes/ramps I can bend the left leg but the right leg stays rigged.  I’m told its a confidence thing as I’m not load bearing equally but I’m sure I’ll get there hopefully.

Anyway that’s my story and I would like to keep you lot updated and appreciate any tips, I know great heights can be reached with these new legs as long as you have the motivation and strength to push yourself (I do lol).

Waqas

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