Mothering Forum banner

1 - 20 of 21 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,387 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
We had an appointment with one of our neuros today and since Linden is growing out of his kimba, he felt that he would still need a wheelchair and needs one that is more suited to him, so he's sending us to the seating clinic. Which I think is awesome. I was having a hard time making the decision to move on to a regular manual chair and it was very nice to have him decide that for me. So it's time and we're doing it.<br><br>
Linden can walk and does walk, but there are also times when he is weak enough or feels bad enough that he needs a lot of support especially in the trunk and neck. this is what makes it so hard to find something that gives him the ability to be independent. Usually if you need that kind of support you're not going to need the same level of manual control, so they are designed for support. And the chairs that are designed for independence don't offer the support that is one of the big reasons we need it in the first place. It would suck to get a chair that wouldn't work when we really needed it to work.<br><br>
So I'm looking for something with good trunk support and a good head rest, but I also want something that he can push himself in if he wants to. Even if he never does, the option is there at least.<br><br>
I also want to get something that looks nifty too. I think he would find it so much less of an intrusion if it appealed to him.<br><br>
So is there any hope of combining those three things in one chair? Anyone seen anything cool for an active 3 year old boy?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
932 Posts
What about this one? It looks more like a stroller than a wheelchair:<br><br><a href="http://www.spinlife.com/Sunrise-/-Quickie-Kid-Kart-Xpress-Stroller/spec.cfm?productID=1077&template=" target="_blank">http://www.spinlife.com/Sunrise-/-Qu...1077&template=</a>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,813 Posts
I LOVE what <a href="http://snugseat.com/Front-page-Snug-Seat.asp?contentsection=144&zcs=3" target="_blank">snugseat</a> has to offer! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up">
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
399 Posts
Have you looked into what sort of accessories are available for the manual chairs? I'd imagine that at least some of the companies would sell optional supports and head rests. (I remember once reading some safety recommendations that said that head rests should always be used with wheelchairs on buses, even for children who don't need them otherwise.)<br><br>
For instance, here's one from Norway: <a href="http://www.alurehab.com/en/Produkter/NettiWheelchairs/Netti4UcomfortCED.aspx" target="_blank">Netti Mini</a>. Lots of options, and a choice of colors. The translation could use some work, though; they advertise their chair as "small comfort." Hmm. But on the up side, it comes with a "small camber angel" on each wheel! I'm sure your little guy would have fun conversing with those!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,219 Posts
I don't know a lot about wheelchairs, but I saw a movie about a little boy who had a Quickie wheelchair with power assist wheels and was very impressed. Power assist basically means that the wheelchair steers and drives like a manual chair, except that there's a battery assist, so that a little/weak push means the chair goes pretty far. Similarly, I think it takes little force to stop the chair.<br><br>
The chair seemed to have lots of different advantages often associated with manual chairs -- much lighter than a traditional power chair, plus the wheels pop off so you can fold it up and put it in the back of the chair like a manual chair.<br><br>
Anyway, I have no idea what Quickie offers in terms of trunk support (although if they're making the chair for people with good motor control but poor strength, it seems like they'd provide what you're looking for), but I thought those wheels were super cool.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,387 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Thanks guys. I have a small list of chairs that I want to check out at the seating clinic if we can. It all depends on what support options they each have, but the PT that does the seating visit should know which ones have what.<br><br>
So far I have:<br>
Colors- Little Dipper<br>
TiLite- YR pediatric<br>
Snug Seat- Cougar/multiframe (i really really love the whole multi frame thing)<br>
Colors- Krypto<br>
Invacare- Comet (I really am not a big fan of invacare chairs, they're usually heavy and bulky)<br>
And I really like that Netti Mini, but I don't know if they make them here.<br><br>
I had thought about the power assist wheels (I was in a wheelchair for several years and looked into them. they're super neat). So I'm planning on asking about that too.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
143 Posts
I don't come to these boards very often but my son has TiLite YRA. It is the same as the YR I believe but for some reason our DME calls it the YRA. If you have any questions about it, I will do my best to answer them.<br><br>
He has custom seating on his frame and he is 5 years old.<br><a href="http://i15.photobucket.com/albums/a375/mekat1/Alec%20Equipment/DSCN0742.jpg" target="_blank">http://i15.photobucket.com/albums/a3...t/DSCN0742.jpg</a>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,387 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
oh wow, so how do you get a custom back instead of the standard ones? did your seating clinic just find a back that fit both him and the chair and go with it? is the chair pretty easy to push? why did you choose that one over the rest?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
143 Posts
<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>MotherWhimsey</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15422479"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">oh wow, so how do you get a custom back instead of the standard ones?</div>
</td>
</tr></table></div>
You have to order the wheelchair though a local DME to get custom seating. Most of them do custom seating and have their own preferred seating components. We used the local branch of National Seating & Mobility because they were the best pediatric DME locally. That may not hold true for your location so ask around you will find that one DME is usually recommended above all others for pediatrics.<br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>MotherWhimsey</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15422479"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">did your seating clinic just find a back that fit both him and the chair and go with it?</div>
</td>
</tr></table></div>
They take custom measurements and then they select the best back that will fit him now and one that will allow enough growth for the coming years.<br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>MotherWhimsey</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15422479"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">is the chair pretty easy to push?</div>
</td>
</tr></table></div>
For me no because the handles they used are low profile but that is part of the custom seating and you can just as easily get taller handles put on if you go to a DME that does custom seating vs just ordering out of a catalog. My son can propel it very well to give you an idea he has low tone and range of movement issues neither are severe but together are problematic. We first started to teach him to propel 6/09. He received his wheelchair 12/09 within weeks he was propelling across the room. Today I sometimes have to run to catch him because he has gotten so fast. When he does propel we peel away the laterals, chest restraints and arm rests because they impede his ability to reach the wheels. We put all those supports back in place if he is stationary.<br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>MotherWhimsey</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15422479"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">why did you choose that one over the rest?</div>
</td>
</tr></table></div>
It was one of the lightest wheelchairs on the market and the back wheels could be moved forward enough to accommodate my son's range of motion. We could have chosen wheelchair with a reverse wheel configuration but decided against that after talking to an adult wheelchair user. She said he would have to lean too far forward and that would add more stress to his shoulders over time. I think she had one other objection to reverse configuration but I sorry don't remember what it was since the conversation took place a year ago.<br>
We also opted for a rigid frame wheelchair based on her advice because she said a folding frame has a bit of wiggle and absorbs some of the forward motion so the same arm movement will move a folding wheelchair less distance. Once again shoulder and arm wear down is important for self propellers since they use the upper extremities all the time. TiLite also has a trade up program as your child grows and needs a larger frame.<br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>MotherWhimsey</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15422479"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">oh, and is there anything about it that really annoys you?</div>
</td>
</tr></table></div>
The handles being too low are one thing. It is only an issue if your child is still young enough that he would need his hand held in public if he were a walker. My son is pretty mentally delayed and I have to keep a hand on the chair at all times in crowds, traffic and parking lots. The handle is at a height that just isn't easily accessible. I also don't like how they have the chest strap bolted to the laterals. His old wheelchair the strap was bolted to the seat so I had the option of using just the laterals or just the straps. The way his seat is configured now I either have to use both or neither. Both of these issues are specific to the custom seating and not the wheelchair itself. The only disadvantage specific to the frame is the lack of tie down brackets for transport. It still has four points it can be tied down to a vehicle for transport in the wheelchair it is just easier to use brackets then to have to manually locate the tie down points. I also want to point out that I had to give up the tie down bracket to have a light weight sports chair that my son would be capable of pushing so it really depends on what your priorities are. I also checked with our school's transportation department and got it in writing that they need four tie down points on the frame and not dedicated tie down brackets so it wasn't a major issue for us.<br><br>
I will be back and post some picture links without my son in the chair. That way you can see what I am talking about. I worry without the pictures my descriptions might not be enough.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
143 Posts
<a href="http://i15.photobucket.com/albums/a375/mekat1/Alec%20Equipment/005.jpg" target="_blank">http://i15.photobucket.com/albums/a3...ipment/005.jpg</a><br><br><a href="http://i15.photobucket.com/albums/a375/mekat1/Alec%20Equipment/006.jpg" target="_blank">http://i15.photobucket.com/albums/a3...ipment/006.jpg</a><br><br><a href="http://i15.photobucket.com/albums/a375/mekat1/Alec%20Equipment/007.jpg" target="_blank">http://i15.photobucket.com/albums/a3...ipment/007.jpg</a>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,387 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
so since it has a custom back, does it fold like the standard TiLites? I have a first generation TiLite (I used a chair for several years) and it has the pull string folding mechanism and the wheels come off, but I don't know if the custom seating means that it doesn't fold or not.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
143 Posts
The wheels are not custom. They are Tilite brand wheels. They came with the frame and they do have a button that presses in and they pop off. The back doesn't fold for us. I'm not entirely sure but there may be a way to configure the chair's custom seating if the folding back is huge deal. You will have to discuss that with the DME to find out for sure though. DS's chair is mainly transported via a minivan but my Ford Van blew out its transmission so I have been having to use my dad's Toyota Avalon. Much to my immense surprise the wheelchair does fit if you pop off the wheels. I don't think the way it is configured it will fit inside the vehicle but to be honest I didn't try. I swore up and down the chair wouldn't fit in the trunk but I found out differently once I tried. Oh DS's frame size is 12 inches wide. Here are the photos of it in the trunk if you are interested.<br><br><a href="http://i15.photobucket.com/albums/a375/mekat1/Alec%20Equipment/001.jpg" target="_blank">http://i15.photobucket.com/albums/a3...ipment/001.jpg</a><br><br><a href="http://i15.photobucket.com/albums/a375/mekat1/Alec%20Equipment/002.jpg" target="_blank">http://i15.photobucket.com/albums/a3...ipment/002.jpg</a>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,387 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
wow, even without folding, that's not bad at all! The one thing I really hate about the Kimba is how much space it takes up when folded. We have to transport a concentrator and about a million other supplies when we go anywhere overnight, and as it is we can barely squeeze the basics in my RAV4. So I am definitely looking forward to having something smaller so that loading and unloading isn't such a logistical challenge. I'd totally settle for something as compact as his chair looks there!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,387 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
How is the stability as far as falling backwards? We'd probably have an oxygen tank hanging off the back so I want to have wheelie bars so that he can't fall back and hit his head on it. I worry that the lighter the chair is, the further back the wheels would have to be placed or the more he'd tip. That would be the only benefit to having a heavier chair. I really think I'm leaning towards the rigid light weight style with a custom back, so we'll just have to find a way to make that work for him.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
143 Posts
<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>MotherWhimsey</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15431667"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">How is the stability as far as falling backwards? We'd probably have an oxygen tank hanging off the back so I want to have wheelie bars so that he can't fall back and hit his head on it. I worry that the lighter the chair is, the further back the wheels would have to be placed or the more he'd tip. That would be the only benefit to having a heavier chair. I really think I'm leaning towards the rigid light weight style with a custom back, so we'll just have to find a way to make that work for him.</div>
</td>
</tr></table></div>
His wheelchair is a little tippy but that is because DME provider moved the wheels as far forward as possible and put good antitips on the chair. My son's issue is range of motion so it was important to have the wheels as far forward as possible. I think you may have to ask for a loaner to know what the true tip factor is in one with wheels placed in a more normal position. I don't know if it will be possible to attach oxygen to the back of the wheelchair there isn't a lot of frame back there and I have a hard time hanging his enteral backpack. I can only say you need to talk to the DME and make sure that the DME is the best local pediatric DME available and find out how many of this model wheelchair he has configured for others since that will help give you a measure of if he knows what he is talking about. If (s)he hasn't configured many or none you might be better off speaking directly to the manufacturer.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,412 Posts
Yeah, I just wanted to generally chime in that we got our wheelchairs custom made. We browsed for frames we liked in catalogues that the people from the child rehab. brought, we had browsed online first though. And when we found the frame, we could get the seats custom made. So it was just for her precise needs. We have one regular, and one electrical. The electrical one is just for outdoor use really, and she can still use it if she's pretty tired, it takes almost no effort to hold the stick so it moves. But he might be too young for that?<br>
If she falls asleep or something, we can move the control panel so it's easy for one of us to walk and use it.<br>
Because the other one, she learned to use it very quickly, but she gets tired in her arms after a while, and can't use it if she's very tired, no strength to get it to move.<br>
But it has high handles, so we can push. (Mostly use that one for travel, because it's light, folds and stuff.)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,387 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
yeh, I really want to put off the whole power chair thing. I think he could manage just fine with a manual chair for now and I don't want to have to make the modifications to the house and find a vehicle that it'll go into. I already talked to insurance and they said that as he gets older if he needs one, the five year limit won't matter because manual chairs and power chairs are in a different category. So that is on hold till he really really needs it.<br><br>
And I'm thinking custom is the way to go. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 
1 - 20 of 21 Posts
Top