Post by Lαrα on Oct 17, 2013 11:39:19 GMT -8
The shoulder joint technically known as (spheroidal joint). is able to achieve a vast range of movement, including rotation. However this joint was never expected to have to deal with daily transfers and self propelling a manual wheelchair.
As time lengthens with a Spinal Cord Injury so does wear on tear on the shoulder joint.
Too much stress put on this joint can affect the efficient function of this joint and in addition cause pain which will then also affect the ability to transfer and self wheel, this will lead to a compromise in independence.
(If you start to experience shoulder pain, the ideal is to rest it and/ or look at some of the practical advice which is offered further in this thread by the Spinal Injuries Association).
Osteoarthritis, tendonitis, dislocations and rotator cuff tears can all be typical shoulder issues for the person with the Spinal Cord Injury.
It is essential that changes are made now so to avoid or reduce the health issues that concern the shoulders
The Spinal Injuries Association offers practical the following practical advice on how to reduce stress and strain on the shoulders:.
You can lessen the strain on your shoulders by keeping your body weight at an acceptable level
Use ‘weight shifts’ (forward and sideways movements) in your wheelchair to relieve pressure, instead of lifting up every time.
Don’t carry unnecessary baggage on your wheelchair
Position the wheels of your wheelchair correctly, to be in line with your shoulders
Maintain your wheelchair – with special attention to correct tyre pressure
Ensure you use the correct pushing technique; if you are not sure, consult with the Occupational Therapist (OT) at your next check-up, and get advice on the correct position in the wheelchair for you.
Examine what methods of transfer you have been using and think how you could adapt these – perhaps assessment and advice from an OT would help
Try to keep using aids for transferring – such as sliding boards, hoists and swivel seats.
Wear a good quality glove to protect skin and help prevent carpal tunnel syndrome (by absorbing some of the pressure and providing extra support).
Explore add-on power pack for wheelchair propulsion.
Use a lightweight wheelchair or Use a power chair part-time (e.g. power chair at work, manual for social life)
Replace vehicle seat with a mechanical or electronic wheelchair system
Change your motor vehicle for a model that could accommodate a lift.
For tetraplegics, support shoulders when in bed as well as in the wheelchair.