Monday, November 21, 2005

Caregiving: transfer board success

     To follow up the transfer board experiment, with REST for Patti, my experiment was a smashing success on Sunday    

     Bambi's recent attempt on my life only reinforced the need to reduce dependency on ME. Currently Patti's only way of getting "out" is if I am involved in her transfer. We needed a method that would be comfortable for Patti, family and friends to take her on outings as casual caregivers and companions.

     Transferring from wheelchair to car using a transfer board has repeatedly failed over the years. Only 'trained professionals' have ever tried and they tend to be locked into the tunnel vision of "conventional use" thinking.  MS, especially fatigue related symptoms are dynamic and demand innovation.

      My idea was to adapt the transfer board as an incline or improvisational "sliding board". (Maybe it's just the kid in me that still cannot resist sliding down banisters whenever possible. <grin>)

     When Patti and I work together she pulls herself up on the car door to a standing position. I pull the wheel chair away. Step in behind her and pivot her trunk into the car seat. Then I lift her legs in one at a time. 

     The experiment was to add a new first step and have Patti simply pull herself partially up just a few inches so I can slide the transferboard between the wheelchair and car seat. Creating a bridge between the two.

     Then as Patti pulls herself up a second time I simultaneously lift up the transfer board end under her which causes her too literally "slide down into" the car as if riding down a sliding board or banister sideways. Most surprising was that momentum and the natural movement pulled her feet right up and in to the car in a sitting position.

                    Picture from Hometown    

     In reality it was safer that our previous method because the wheel chair was never pulled away and the addition of the transfer board added an additional bridge between chair and car. Less effort and stress was used by all involved. With practice this could become fun. <grin>

     Saturday fatigue crushed any plans. Sunday we all spent almost 8 family hours together. Of course, over 3 of them were devoted to Patti's afternoon nap but that is "living with MS". You have to compensate for fatigue into successful planning.

...( Banner advertising at the top is not endorsed by us nor do we receive any compensation for it. AOL recently bought Weblogs, Inc. and obviously has millions in bills to pay.)


  1. for what it's worth I think AOL should only have ads on the free version of the blog software. that's pretty much how all the blog software providers work: if you pay it's free, if you don't pay you deal with an advertisement to pay for your server space/bandwidth.

    best jason
    (co-founder of Weblogs, Inc.!)
    my blog =

  2. Now this is an excellent idea.  My nephew is a teenager, and the transfer from car to chair has gotten a lot more difficult as he's grown.  I'm going to share this with my sister.


Blog Archive