Rehab Cell

Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation

Physical Therapy After Amputation: What I Wish I Knew (Episode 4)

Physical Therapy After Amputation: What I Wish I Knew (Episode 4)

Hi, my name is Lisa. I have been an above-knee amputee since July
7th of 2017. I also had a below the knee amputation done
in February of 2015 and.. When I had that amputation, I did some in-patient
therapy just for a few days transitioning from the hospital to home. But after that, I did not do any physical
therapy, I just walked on my own and did things and I definitely did not learn the proper
techniques, the proper steps. I definitely got tired, my back hurt, things
of that sort. So, having become an above-knee amputee, I
have definitely realized and learned that therapy is a vital part of my getting better
and getting stronger. It is completely different, of course, from
a below-knee amputation to an above-knee. But, the process of therapy is so helpful
in so many ways. I mean, it makes you stronger, it makes you
a better walker, it makes you walk properly so you’re not hurting. You know, your back’s not hurting, but it’s
also a great support for you when you come in. You work with your therapist one-on-one and
they help you, they listen. They teach you the proper way to do things
and how to do things, and make you, you know, better at what you’re doing. So, I really really have come a long way having
done the therapy this time versus last time. You know, I walked fine, but now I walk straighter,
and I walk better, and I’m getting stronger every day because I’m learning how to do things
properly. But, one of the most important things, like
I said, is when you come in they give you the support that you need, and the help that
you need to get you to your goals so that when you’re ready, you know you’ll be able
to go out and walk in the grass or walk through rocks or walk on a hill and not be afraid
to just do what it is you want to do. And, you’ll be able to go everywhere. You won’t miss out on things that your kids
are doing, or family events, things of that sort. So, I definitely have learned a lot. I’m very grateful for all of the help that
I’ve received with my therapy. And, you know, you have got to dedicate a
lot of time, but it’s worth it. It definitely makes you stronger. It teaches you the proper way to do things. It teaches you a much more efficient way to
walk, and to not hurt. You know, when you’re walking if you don’t
learn the proper techniques and the proper patterns, you know, your back will hurt every
day. You’ll be more tired. You’ll just feel very sluggish, you won’t
want to get up and do things, because you’ll feel so run-down. And, you’re not doing it properly, so your
back is hurting or your other leg is hurting, things of that sort. Definitely something that I have noticed from
not doing the therapy from below-knee to above-knee. It definitely.. my back hurts a lot less,
like almost not at all now that I’ve been doing therapy for a couple months. And, also, you know, when you’re out if something
does happen to you and you fall, you’re not afraid to fall because they teach you the
proper techniques of how to get up. They also teach you techniques of how to try
not to fall if you start to stumble. They teach you the techniques to try to save
that.. yourself from falling basically to stay on your feet. You might be a little wobbly, but you don’t
end up on the ground, but when you do you’ll at least know what happens, how to get up,
how to be safe about getting up instead of being so worried that you’re going to fall
out in public or even in your home, that you’re afraid to use your prosthetic. Definitely though as far as just the walking,
I definitely, you know, am getting better at it using less energy. They’ve taught me proper technique, proper
gait pattern to walk so that my back, you know, is level. My hips are level, I’m not hurting, I’m not
leaning to the side. I’m not limping. You know, all of those things are really important
and most people want to learn how to walk properly so that they don’t even look like
they have a prosthetic leg. That’s important to a lot of us. You know, we want to look like we’re just
a normal person walking down the street. That’s all part of therapy. They help you to do all of those things, and
to use a lot less energy doing it and to be a lot safer while you’re doing it also.

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