Posts Tagged Wilson Prosthetics

Willing Hands Give Independence, Hope and New Opportunities

1 week. 30 prostheses. 23 verbal professions of faith. Numerous lives changed.

It is amazing how God works to bring people together to open doors and to provide opportunity. A team of six traveled to San Salvador, El Salvador to partner with Rotary and FUNTER to provide prosthetic care and to share the light of Christ.

The first day involved evaluating and casting the patients. We were amazed by the ingenuity and resiliency as one of the first patients walked in on a leg he had made himself from a single piece of wood.

 

The next two days we were all immersed in modifying and fabricating to be ready to fit and deliver Thursday and Friday.

 

 

The people of El Salvador are full of generosity and gratefulness. For one of our patients with a left transtibial amputation, this was the first time she had walked in two years.  As a thank you gift her and her husband gave a basket full of fresh fruit. She came in with her only pair of shoes. She does not work and has very little. This was a tremendous gift. She was so grateful for the chance to walk again and to work.

 

 

While in El Salvador we were also able to partner with the Fridenstine’s and the work their team is doing with Emmanuel Baptist Church and Emmanuel Baptist School in Cojutepeque, El Salvador. We had the privilege of sharing the gospel through colored bracelets and handed out over 180 backpacks to the students.

 

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“and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.” John 8:32

 

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“El Salvador is calling and we must go.”

 

 

 

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Pediatric Prosthetics

Over the years, the Prosthetic Industry has made significant advancements in designs, components, materials and processes. The increase in comfort and functionality of prosthetics these days is outstanding…as long as you are over the age of 12 that is. What has lagged behind is the entire field of pediatric prosthetics for young children – who in actuality have significant strength, motivation and fervor. Thankfully, a handful of individuals and companies in the field have recognized the need for development in this area and are making strides to help pediatric prosthetic patients excel.

Take a look at this recent article from OandP.com, a leading resource of up and coming orthotic and prosthetic news. EastPoint’s Raleigh clinician, Brent Wright, even ways in on the subject in the article. You’ll also see a recent picture of our sweet little patient Miyah!

OandP.com Article – Pediatric Prosthetics

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Prosthetic Clinics in the Developing World

 

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        Diabetes, infection, motor-bike accidents, land mines, and birth  defects (due to poor nutrition and water) are some of the leading causes of amputations in the developing world. Most amputees in these parts of the world live in extreme poverty, often on less than a few dollars a day, making it simply unattainable to receive prosthetic care.     IMG_2834

At EastPoint, part of our core values are to glorify God as He uses our gifts and abilities to transform lives. One of the ways we do this is by addressing these prosthetic needs in the developing world. In February and March, some of our clinicians and prosthetic residents will head to Guatemala and to El Salvador. While there, we will work with local partners in those areas to facilitate free prosthetic clinics. It is such a blessing to not only meet the physical need of providing prosthetic devices and care, but also to build relationships with the patients there as we share the love of Christ in both word and in deed.

MJ helping outPlease keep our teams in your prayers throughout February and March as they prepare for these clinics and travel to these countries. We look forward to sharing stories about their experiences and about the wonderful people they are able to care for.  IMG_8832

 

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Tis’ the Season for New Year’s Resolutions

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What’s on your list for 2016 resolutions? For many, improving their health is at the top of the list. This may include making better food choices, such as adding more fruits and vegetables or cutting back on sugar, or your goals may be exercise related, to become more active and strengthen your body. Whatever it is, taking care of the body we are given is important. If you are an amputee though, figuring out ways to be more active can often feel daunting. Perhaps you might like these suggestions for improving strength and flexibility.

Flexability

Movement and stretching are key for all amputees. It’s important your body doesn’t stay locked in any one position for too long. For example, if you are a below-the-knee amputee, be sure to fully extend your knee in a stretch position throughout the day each day (perhaps 15-20 minutes each time). You can stretch it out on a couch, a chair or even the floor. Just be mindful of releasing your knee from its bent position for at least short periods of time each day.

It’s also important for amputees to keep their hips stretched out. So much of your walking strength and balance comes from this area. Try lying on the floor on your stomach with your hips flat on the ground. Do this a couple times a day for 10-15 minutes. For an even better stretch, slightly lift up your head and shoulders or even place a couple pillows under your chest to prop you up while your hips are stretching out.

Strength 

Hips and Legs: For strengthening your hips, lie on each side while you raise and lower your leg or residual limb on the side that is on top. Repeat on each side. Try several repetitions of these each day, and if possible, continue to keep the side of your body that is on the ground straight to continue allowing the hips to stretch out. This will improve strength in your hip abductors and adductors. If you want to strengthen hamstrings and quads, the suggestion is similar. For quads: while lying on your back on the floor, raise and lower each leg one at a time. For hamstrings: change to lying on your stomach on the floor and repeat the same process, raising and lowering one leg at a time.

Arms: Arm strength is another important area to not neglect. Arm exercises can be done in a variety of ways. If you own or have access to an exercise machine, take advantage of the various arm settings it offers, or even simple dumbbells can be used at home. You want to use some some weight resistance for strengthening these muscles. If your amputation allows you to do push-ups or tricep dips, this is a great way to strengthen your arms with your natural body weight.

Balance: Lastly, amputees must have good balance and this takes lots and lots of practice. Start first with balancing exercises on your good leg. While standing just on that leg, try reaching out for things, bending down to pick something up, twisting for something behind you etc. This takes a lot of work and really improves your core strength, where your balance stems from. Once you get better at doing these things on your good leg, start slow and try them while standing only on your prosthesis. Be sure to practice these moves safely, either with another person around to catch you or with a walker or wheelchair nearby. Also, don’t forget functional training for every day activities like shifting your balance back and forth between each leg, climbing a step, or even kicking a ball. You might just surprise yourself with what all you can do.

Remember, your overall health as an amputee plays a key role in your mobility. Keeping your body at a healthy weight, make good food choices, and practicing daily flexibility and strength training exercises are going to make a significant difference in your success. Becoming an amputee has likely shown you that you are stronger than you ever thought you were – keep up the good work as you inspire us all with your courage.

(Keep in mind, we are not doctors and this information is not intended to be taken as medical advice. Please consult your doctor before beginning any new exercise routine.)

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A Journey Towards Hope From Palestine to Kinston, NC

We are honored we had the opportunity to help a new friend, 16 year-old Anan Fahid, who traveled all the way from a refugee camp in Jericho, Palestine to Kinston, NC to receive his first prosthetic leg. The Palestinian Children’s Relief Fund found EastPoint while searching online for an option for Anan. When PCRF saw EastPoint’s heart for serving and loving all of our patients both local and overseas, they knew we would be a good fit. The PCRF provided funding for Anan’s travel and Paul Sugg, owner of EastPoint Prosthetics and Orthotics, provided and fit Anan with his new leg.

Anan lost his leg two years ago due to cancer, and while he never imagined he would be in the USA, receiving a prosthetic leg, he never lost hope for what his future held. Hope, in fact is Anan’s biggest message to others, never give up, there IS hope.

During one of Anan’s appointments we were thrilled to introduce him to Faizal Handoon, an aspiring Paralympian who is also one of our patients. Faizal was able to share more with Anan about the unlimited opportunities he still has as an amputee. We appreciate Faizal for taking the time to meet with Anan and encourage him along the way.

Anan with continue to stay with a host family in Greenville, NC while he continues to gain strength and adjust to his new prosthesis. We look forward to continuing our relationship with Anan and seeing what his future holds.

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Never Give Up!

Jami        As a Kindergarten teacher and as a Mom, Jami Marseilles wanted to apply her lessons to real life and show her kids the true results of perseverance and dedication. Jami lost her legs as a teenager, and now at nearly 47 years old she has become the first female, double-amputee to cross the finish line in a full marathon this past weekend in Chicago. Jamie proves that anything is possible with hard work and she inspires us all with her accomplishment.

Jami’s story

 

 

(Photo by Beau Marseilles)

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A Paralympian’s Dream: Faizal

“You won’t find your dream until you lose your excuses.” 

Orrin Woodward 

Faizal Hamdoon tests his East Point Prosthetics & Orthotics, Inc. prosthetic leg Thursday at the track at Kinston High School. Hamdoon was born with melorheostosis, a birth defect, and had an above knee amputation. He is 2016 Paralympic games hopeful. Photo by Janet S. Carter / The Free Press Set-backs, tragedy, and resilience mark the journey of our patient Faizal Hamdoon.  Rather than dwelling on the challenges of his past; he chooses instead to set his eyes on what’s yet to come as he pursues his 2016 Paralympian dream.

Born in Sri Lanka, Faizal’s family came to America to pursue better opportunities for he and his brother and to have access to advanced medical care regarding his rare bone deformity condition, Melorheostosis.  After years of surgeries, it became necessary to allow a below the knee amputation.  Unfortunately, this procedure did not go well and he was left as an above the knee disarticulation amputee.

Through the years, Faizal has been in and out of hospitals, endured numerous surgeries, fought with his family to survive as immigrants, struggled to make ends meet through the ups and downs of a family business, and even endured the tragic loss of his father to cancer.

Yet with the strength of his Dad’s spirit still in his heart, perseverance and resilience have allowed him to arrive where he is today – training and succeeding as a Paralympian. Currently Faizal has his eyes set on his next goal – Brazil 2016! Join us as we support him in fulfilling his dreams! Stay tuned for more updates.Faizal Hamdoon

Other Recent Accomplishments:

Competing in the 2013 Desert Challenge Games was a rewarding debut track event where Faizal got to Nationally Classify as a T42, and bring home the bronze; a personal high for a new comer with only six months of training at the time, racing on a low performance leg!

Competing in meets co-sponsored by the US Paralympic Committee, placing 3rd, 4th and 5th against seasoned athletes and Paralympians – despite setbacks to prosthesis and hamstring issues

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Choosing a Prosthetist – What You Need To Know

Does it really matter who I choose as my Prosthetist? How big of a difference could it actually make? Well…the truth is, you would be surprised how different your outcome could be if you don’t do your homework. Everything from credentials to communication, availability and of course a good fit should be considered. In the end, choosing the right prosthetist is an important decision that ultimately is up to you. A doctor’s recommendation can be a great place to start, but there are many other factors to consider before you move forward. It’s a great idea to do your research, ask questions, and even take the time to meet the Prosthetist before your decision is made.

Factors to Consider:

Credentials: Is he or she certified by the American Board for Certification? How much experience does this person or company have?

Proximity: All prostheses require follow-up appointments. How far is their office from my house? Do they offer mobile services that can save me time and money?

Communication: Does this person listen and communicate well? Is it easy to talk to them? Do I feel comfortable asking questions? Are they willing to operate through a team approach with my doctor, therapist, and/or caregivers?

Availability: How easily will I be able to get in touch with them for appointments? Who will I call if I have any complications?

Insurance: Will their company accept my insurance? If my device needs a prior-authorization, who will make sure one is received? What will be my out-of-pocket expenses? Do they offer payment plans?

Recommendations: Are there any reviews or recommendations I can find from current patients? (social media or word-of-mouth)

Updated Knowledge: Is this person well informed regarding the latest options, materials, components and research?

Each patient is unique, and finding just the right fit takes time, patience, skill, and open communication. You must be able to express to your prosthetist your lifestyle needs, activities, and goals. Make sure they understand what factors are a priority to you. Your prosthesis should fit comfortably and simply be a tool that helps you function more effectively, not something that slows you down or causes any pain. With a well-fit prosthesis and the right Prosthetist by your side, you really can achieve excellent outcomes in mobility.

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