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Spina bifida

little boy Paul

Simon’s story

Simon is 67 years old; he has a diagnosis of spina bifida and Parkinson’s, and lives with his wife, Sue, who is his main carer. Over time, Simon’s level of function and mobility has deteriorated, and he is no longer able to weight bear and mobilise. Simon is, however, able to bottom shuffle and crawl on all fours, and this is his preferred method of mobilising around his property. Simon uses a wheelchair for all outdoor mobility.

Simon uses a great deal of his own strength and assistance from Sue to pull himself up onto his stair lift and wheelchair from the floor. To transfer off the furniture, Simon carefully lowers himself to the ground. This is a challenging task, which places Simon and Sue at risk of injury. Alternative interventions have been explored, however, Simon has advised that this is his preferred method, and Sue continues to support him.

Bed transfers involve the additional challenge of raising and lowering Simon’s legs on and off the bed. This transfer became too difficult for Simon even with assistance from Sue, and so Simon became dependent on a mobile hoist, which Sue used to transfer him between the floor and the bed for each transfer.

Both Simon and Sue found this restrictive as he and Sue needed to coordinate their morning routines to ensure that Sue was available to assist with hoisting Simon out of bed. Once out of bed, Simon is able to independently access the wet room facility and manage his personal care independently.

Results

A FloorBed™ was put into place for a trial. Prior to transferring into the bed, the bed is lowered to its lowest point of 70 mm from the ground.

Simon immediately demonstrated that he is able to safely and independently transfer between the floor and the bed with great ease, eliminating the need for a hoist or assistance from Sue. With the bed at the lowest point, it is easily accessible for Simon to either bottom shuffle or crawl onto the bed or lower himself onto the ground from the bed.

Simon strives to be as independent as possible with each of his daily tasks and struggles to retain his dignity. The FloorBed™™TM enables Simon to be more autonomous and, therefore, increases his level of independence and dignity.

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