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How does one cope with the loss of a leg in later life?

exdvrexdvr Posts: 291Member Pioneering
An elderly friend is about to have a leg amputated following years of problems and is obviously concerned about carrying on afterwards, particularly regarding mobility and toileting.  He feels that he would be unlikely to have a prosthetic fitted.     Does anyone elderly have any experience of this sort of thing that they would like share?

Best wishes.

DLTBGYD

Replies

  • Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Posts: 6,556Administrator Scope community team
    Hi @exdvr, thank you for posting this,, I hope your friend is okay.

    Have they had chance to speak with an occupational therapist or physio about how they would manage afterwards? This type of rehabilitation is often given in hospital. It might be worth asking their doctor if this would happen.

    I hope others are able to offer their experiences.
    Chloe
    Online Community Officer
  • janer1967janer1967 Posts: 184Member Pioneering
    Hi I had my leg amputated 3 years ago at the age of 50 so not really elderly. It is life changing I wont deny. I got great support from the hospital team physio and occupational health. I have difficulty using a prosthetic leg so mostly i dont use it. There are lots of aids which the oh can recommend and supply like frames for toilet bath lifts etc your friend should organise a assessment with oh. It isn't easy but you learn to adjust and make most of it. Help from friends and family is the most precious. I also found moving into a bungalow is the best thing I did  
    If you have anymore questions I'm happy to try and help 
  • exdvrexdvr Posts: 291Member Pioneering
    Hi @exdvr, thank you for posting this,, I hope your friend is okay.

    Have they had chance to speak with an occupational therapist or physio about how they would manage afterwards? This type of rehabilitation is often given in hospital. It might be worth asking their doctor if this would happen.

    I hope others are able to offer their experiences.

    Thank you for your prompt rely.  He has diabetes and high risk for a heart attack or stroke.  Worries about life expectancy and if it would be worthwhile having the operation and quality of life if he went ahead.  He's in his seventies and not in a happy place at the moment.

    Best wishes.

    DLTBGYD

  • Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Posts: 6,556Administrator Scope community team
    I'm sorry to hear this @exdvr, you sound like a very supportive friend. Has he had any mental health support at all? It sounds like he has a lot going on at the moment.
    Chloe
    Online Community Officer
  • pollyanna1052pollyanna1052 Posts: 1,509Member Disability Gamechanger
    janer1967 said:
    Hi I had my leg amputated 3 years ago at the age of 50 so not really elderly. It is life changing I wont deny. I got great support from the hospital team physio and occupational health. I have difficulty using a prosthetic leg so mostly i dont use it. There are lots of aids which the oh can recommend and supply like frames for toilet bath lifts etc your friend should organise a assessment with oh. It isn't easy but you learn to adjust and make most of it. Help from friends and family is the most precious. I also found moving into a bungalow is the best thing I did  
    If you have anymore questions I'm happy to try and help 

    Hi, hope you dont mind me asking....do you get phantom pains? I`ve heard they can be really hard to cope with.
    Best wishes xx
  • janer1967janer1967 Posts: 184Member Pioneering
    @pollyanna1052 hi of course I dont mind you asking. Yes i do get pains it is a nerve pain very sharp sudden pain which feels like it's in part of leg that is no longer there which sounds daft. They do get less over time and controlled with meds. It's not nice but manageable 
  • pollyanna1052pollyanna1052 Posts: 1,509Member Disability Gamechanger
    Thanks for sharing janer xx
  • exdvrexdvr Posts: 291Member Pioneering
    I'm sorry to hear this @exdvr, you sound like a very supportive friend. Has he had any mental health support at all? It sounds like he has a lot going on at the moment.
    He has a thing about only living to 75 whether or not he has the operation.  A sort of Catch 22 situation. Depression is no longer a case of peaks and troughs, more like a continual downward spiral.  He has another appointment soon with a psych nurse but he is talking about ending it all rather than waiting another 3 years for it to end naturally. It's very worrying and upsetting.

    Best wishes.

    DLTBGYD

  • pollyanna1052pollyanna1052 Posts: 1,509Member Disability Gamechanger
    exdvr said:
    I'm sorry to hear this @exdvr, you sound like a very supportive friend. Has he had any mental health support at all? It sounds like he has a lot going on at the moment.
    He has a thing about only living to 75 whether or not he has the operation.  A sort of Catch 22 situation. Depression is no longer a case of peaks and troughs, more like a continual downward spiral.  He has another appointment soon with a psych nurse but he is talking about ending it all rather than waiting another 3 years for it to end naturally. It's very worrying and upsetting.

    That`s really sad. If the poor man is determined to do away with himself, then why go through the amputation and all it`s difficulties.

    Do you believe he will do this or s he crying out for more help?

    Either way, I do feel sorry for him....and you ....xx
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