Bill uses the multi-surface Walkway
An update from Revive MS Support
Following our receipt of a grant of £2,000 from the Hospital Saturday Fund, in 2018, I am writing with a brief update on our establishment of a multi-surface Walkway to reduce the fall risk of people with critical, MS-related, mobility and balance problems, and to support their rehabilitation and independence.
A significant proportion of the 1,700 people we support each year have walking difficulties (circa 80%), which come with an increased risk of falls. The consequences of this can be devastating and include fractures and a fear of falling, which in turn is linked to isolation and other outcomes that affect the quality of life of people with MS and their families and carers.
In this context, and with the support of the Fund, we have established a multi-surface Walkway that mimics real-world walking conditions. This is already benefiting people like Derek and Bill.
Derek using the multi-surface Walkway
Derek (51) suffers from “overwhelming fatigue” and “terrible balance” – he needs a walking aid, his knee locks on stairs and he has narrowly avoided injury on a number of occasions due to balance issues.
Through a combination of: Hudl technology (used by our physio team to assess and adapt his walking pattern); muscle stimulation and strengthening, through regular physio and FES in our gym; and consistent practice on the Walkway, he is gaining the confidence and strength he needs to remain independent and reduce and avoid falls. Having led a very active life as a regular golfer and rugby coach, prior to diagnosis, this is having a major impact on Derek’s quality of life, and that of his family;
This is equally true of Bill.
“Approximately 75% of (people like Bill i.e. wheel-chair users with MS) report at least one fall in a 6-month period and nearly half report frequent falls.” Access to regular, guided, practice across the multiple surfaces of the Walkway is improving his safety and that of so many of our clients (the majority of our clients have Progressive MS and an increasing number use wheel-chairs).
This demonstrates the significant impact of the Hospital Saturday Fund’s support and the long-term benefits that this will have for many hundreds of people with MS over the coming years.
Given that the Walkway is protecting (and will protect) so many people with MS from the devastating effects of falling, contributing greatly to their independence and quality of life, we are very grateful indeed to the Hospital Saturday Fund for providing the seed funding that we needed to establish this important new service.
Iain Morrison, Chief Executive
Find out more about Revive MS Support from their website: https://www.revivemssupport.org.uk/