Our patient Craig started on a long path of recovery and rehabilitation after his accident. Craig has an above-elbow amputation that has resulted in years of difficulty and pain. One of the first challenges that Craig encountered was initially going to a different prosthetic provider. “Due to the pain that I'm in, I wasn't able to receive a prosthesis from the company close to me. Everything was kind of made too heavy. I just needed somebody who really specialized in arms.” We’re glad he came to Arm Dynamics and that we’re able to help him on his journey.

After Craig’s amputation, and before he came to see us, Craig had two different targeted muscle reinnervation (TMR) surgeries. He also currently has two neuromas, despite having two others surgically removed. “My pain is pretty intense. It’s 24/7. My arm constantly feels like it’s being electrocuted or has pins and needles. I don’t really get a break. So if you add any compression, any weight, it makes the pain worse, it fires up those nerves.” This was the challenge that Craig brought to our Portland team. Our prosthetist, Mac, technician, Cullen and clinical therapy specialist, Jamie, were up to the challenge. “I needed something unique to my situation and the amount of pain I deal with. Working with those three, they have been able to alleviate some of that pressure that is caused by a prosthesis by using the BOA system and the silicone socket. That was really awesome. And the fit is great. It’s a nice, tight fit, just like it should be.”

Considering that Craig is still experiencing a lot of pain, his clinical team made him a shorter prosthesis that includes a hinged elbow, and a wrist with interchangeable terminal devices. The idea is to keep his device light. Our patient Wendi also utilizes this design. Our team is always happy to be innovative and creative with prosthesis designs to create what will work best for each unique patient.


What Craig needs now is to build up his strength before he’s going to able use his prosthesis for more than 15 minutes a day. “Before my recent fitting with Mac, I hadn’t used a prosthetic device in about three years. I just couldn’t.” Between Craig’s phantom limb pain and residual limb pain, the weight and pressure of his old prosthesis made it unwearable. “But with this prosthesis, I’m starting to see the potential here. I’m building up to 30 minutes, and soon I’ll be up to 45 minutes, and then I can dive in and start doing things like making a meal.”

What Craig wants most is to get back into hunting and fishing. “I was able to row a boat for a bit down the river, and it’s great to know I can get there. I've been fit with a terminal device for fishing made by Rexfly. I’ve also got a TRS Jaws activity-specific terminal device, which I can use for picking things up, holding my oar it’s super easy with that device. It’s amazing I haven’t been able to paddle with an oar in three years. And then with my TRS Turret, I can use that for holding my shotgun when I hunt. I’ve got a vice grip that I want to use for hopefully hanging on to a deer when I'm processing it. All this potential, it’s inspiring me, I want to get back in the kitchen and cook.“

So, it’s taking Craig time. It took him time to heal and recover and get to the point where he could use a prosthesis. It took him time to find a specialist like Arm Dynamics that could fit him with a device that works for him. Now it’s taking him time to build up his strength and endurance to use his device for longer each week and month. We can’t wait to catch up with him in a few months and see how he’s doing we’ll be sure to update you, the reader. In the meantime, you can watch Craig with some of his devices in the video below:

“I really needed the upper limb specialty at Arm Dynamics to help eliminate a lot of the pain my first prosthesis was causing.” If you would like to discover what makes us different from other prosthetic care providers when it comes to upper limb rehabilitation, please contact us. It’s not just our unique approach to fitting patients, it’s also the therapy we offer each patient. If you have thoughts on this article or would like us to relay a comment to Craig, please leave it in the section below.


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