Note: This is a guest blog by Tom Schwab, founder of Goodbye Crutches.
To better understand what our customers who are recovering from surgery experience on a daily basis, we recently had “crutch day.” On Monday morning everyone was given a pair of crutches to use for the entire day. While we had a lot of fun (watch on You Tube) we also learned a lot about why a Knee Walker is easier to use than crutches. Here are the top 5 reasons I found Knee Walkers preferable to crutches.
- No Cheating: It has been proven that people can’t accurately gauge just how much weight they put on an injured leg. People will bear weight until it hurts and often that’s enough to do damage or compromise healing. With a Knee Walker your foot can’t touch the ground, so you are guaranteed to be completely Non-Weight Bearing.
- Don’t Need Arm Strength: After just a few hours on crutches my arms were tired. If it had been crutch week the soreness and chaffing would have been an issue. With the Knee Scooter your arms aren’t involved.
- More Stable in Any Weather: I can’t imagine confidently using crutches in snow or rain. The Knee Scooter can be used in all conditions except deep snow.
- Makes Normal Life Less of a Chore: By lunch I was making decision based on whether or not it was worth the effort. I admit I didn’t wash filthy hands before eating a sandwich. It was too much work and they‘d only get filthy again from the rubber hand grips. I better understood how recovery from an injury or surgery can lead to isolation and even to depression. A Knee Scooter can make everyday tasks more manageable.
- You Need To Eat and Drink: On crutches there was no way to get a cup of coffee to my office. I ended up kicking the travel mug down the hall. With the knee scooter I could put the travel mug in the basket. The basket on the Knee Walker was also helpful at lunch and for carrying papers at work.
A day on crutches proved the surgeon was right when he told me that if I ever had to be on crutches for 8 weeks I’d show up at my first office visit with a black cast. I’d be embarrassed, he’d be mad, and we both wouldn’t like the long-term outcome. If crutches don’t work for your lifestyle, talk to your doctor. There may be options to help you regain your mobility, stability, and livelihood while you recover on one foot.
Lance Silverman, MD
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