Walker Needing assistance with walking is something that may effect anyone at some point in life.
Whether the help will be permanent or temporary, knowing what options there are to help you will be important in order to find the proper help for your particular need. By Jean Lockwood,
Significance People have many different reasons for needing help with walking. Using an assistive devise for walking will help take the weight of the body off lower limbs, improve balance, help relieve pain in lower extremities and redistribute weight to make movement easier. Types Types of walking devices available include canes, crutches and walkers. All of them are available in different styles and with features that will help make using them more comfortable. Function For minimum walking and balancing assistance, a cane may be enough help. If there is less strength in legs, or if there is a broken leg, crutches may be called for. Walkers offer more stability for all over balance help and those who have less strength to support themselves. Benefits Assistive devices for walking are used by many people, and for many reasons. The elderly sometimes use them to increase mobility, and people of any age who may need assistance because of an injury or illness may need the help of a tool such as a cane, crutches or walker.
Canes widen the base of support and decrease stress on the opposite lower extremity. Canes can unload the lower limb weight by bearing up to 25% of a patient's body weight. Canes can be made of wood or aluminum; tubular aluminum is lighter than wood. Aluminum canes are adjustable, which is a characteristic that facilitates their use by patients of all sizes. Determining the proper cane length is important. A cane that is fitted incorrectly produces an inefficient gait pattern. A short cane reduces support during the stance phase, and it tends to keep the elbow in complete extension. A long cane causes excess elbow flexion, which leads to increased muscle fatigue on the triceps and shoulder muscles. To determine the proper cane length, measure from the tip of the cane to the level of the greater trochanter while the patient is in an upright position. The elbow should be flexed approximately 20°. Types of canes Generally, the following 3 types of canes are used: C cane - This is the most commonly used cane. Other names used for this device include the crook-top cane, the J cane, and the single-point cane. Functional-grip cane o This type of cane provides better grip and more controlled balance for patients. o The grip of a functional-grip cane is more comfortable than that of a C cane. o The ortho cane is an example of a functional-grip cane. Quad cane
o o o o
Quad canes provide more support than do other standard canes. Narrow- and wide-based forms of quad canes are available. Quad canes are especially helpful for patients with hemiplegia. Slow gait is one disadvantage of quad canes
Patients should avoid resting their body weight on the axillary area. as well as a handgrip or bar. An extension crutch (ie.  these devices require good trunk control. Also called forearm or arm canes (or forearm or arm orthoses). both of which are adjustable. 4.padding to the axillary area should be discouraged for this reason. Adjustable axillary crutch 2. The primary advantage of an axillary crutch is that it allows transfer of 80% of the individual's body weight.
y y y y y y
. Permanent axillary crutch. The axillary crutch is not designed to be rested on for body support. The patient needs confidence in his/her ambulation skills. Lofstrand crutches/Canadian crutches Most popular of nonaxillary crutches Most useful substitute for canes Most often used bilaterally Made of tubular aluminum Padded hand bar Forearm cuff o The open end of the cuff is placed on the lateral aspect of the forearm to permit elbow flexion and grasping without dropping the orthosis. Standard axillary crutches have double uprights with a shoulder piece. Forearm crutch with closed leather circle cuff. o The proximal portion of the orthosis is angled at 20° to provide a comfortable. Axillary Crutches An axillary crutch is a type of orthosis that provides support from the axilla to the floor. Ortho crutch. Crutch types are shown in the images below. currently are in use. Ortho crutch A single-bar aluminum crutch with a contoured underarm piece Has an adjustable handpiece Lighter than a regular crutch
y y y
Nonaxillary Crutches Nonaxillary crutches allow the transfer of 40-50% of the patient's body weight. Forearm aluminum crutch with adjustable forearm piece. 14. one with an adjustable length) is heavier than a regular crutch because of the extra piece of wood. 6. However. are available. Wood and aluminum axillary crutches. 3. nonaxillary)
1. and patients can free their hands for activities by leaning on the shoulder piece. the patient should be advised of the possibility of sustaining compressive brachial neuropathies with the use of axillary crutches. 15]
Two types of crutches (ie.
[5. providing better stability than do canes. axillary. 1. 2. Providing extra performing complete elbow extension. stable fit. Axillary crutches provide better trunk support than do nonaxillary or forearm crutches.Crutches Crutch Types Crutches have 2 points of contact with the body. Platform crutch.