Wheelchairs - PowerPoint PPT Presentation


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Adductor cushion or pommel: A cushion placed between the knees to try and control for adductor spasticity or contractures. ... orthoses, or clearance of the ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Wheelchairs

  • It is a mobility orthosis, providing appropriate
    support to allow maximum functional mobility. It
    is a combination of a postural support system and
    a mobility base, that are joined to create a
    dynamic seated environment.

Wheelchair functions
  • It is a functional aid which can
  • Provide protection
  • Spare the heart
  • Support and stabilize the body,
  • Stimulate activities
  • Afford locomotion while maintaining immobilized
    one or another part of the body to perform ADL.
  • It enables many patients to move about without
    undue effort.
  • Psychological value
  • Stimulating greater interest in ones
    surroundings and a greater desire to keep moving.

Common cases that could need wheel chairs
  • Those who need wheelchairs are those who
    either should not or
  • cannot walk, walking is either Inadvisable or

  • Inadvisability of ambulation may be because of
  • Contraindications to weight-bearing
  • Interference with wound healing
  • Prior to ambulation,
  • Inadequate safety in walking , or
  • Deficiency of the patients judgment.
  • In all of these conditions, the restriction
    against walking may be temporary.

  • Deficiency in ambulation
  • results usually from the involvement of both
    lower limbs by one or more of such conditions as
  • Absence of an essential part,
  • Paralysis.
  • Deformity,
  • Pain on weight bearing,
  • In coordination.
  • In all of these conditions, the use of wheel
    chair may be permanent.

Contraindications limitations
  • Trunk weakness
  • Postural defects.
  • Disc and nerve root compressions
  • Low back pain due to strains, sprains.
  • Ischial decubitus ulcer.
  • Surgical or postoperative conditions of the
  • Vertebral fractures
  • Certain fractures of the pelvis.
  • Fractures of the proximal part of the femur.

Types of Wheelchair
  1. Standard wheelchair
  2. Standard light weight wheelchair.
  3. Ultra lightweight transport wheelchair.
  4. Bathroom wheelchair.
  5. Reclining back rigid frame sports chair.
  6. Tennis chair.
  7. Heavy duty pediatric wheelchair.
  8. Power wheelchair

Components of the wheelchair
  • Wheelchair frame stationary or foldable.
  • Seat and cushion
  • Arm rests fixed or adjustable. Stationary or
  • Leg rests adjustable or removable
  • Foot rests
  • Restraints chest belts

Wheel chair options and accessories
  • Caster locks
  • Casters are the small front wheels locks are
    sometimes selected to allow the patient to lock
    the casters out to the side (90 dgrees for side
    transfers) or to the front (180 degrees for front
    or back transfers) to provide a larger base of
    support during transfers.
  • Crutch / cane holder
  • It is a small cup at the base of the wheelchair
    with a strap at the top to allow transportation
    of these ambulatory aids.
  • Anti-tipping device
  • Placed on the back tipping lever, these devices
    prevent the patient from tipping backwards in the
    chairs, but also limit going up curbs.

  • Hill-holder device
  • A mechanical brake that allows the chair to go
    forward, but automatically brakes when the chair
    goes in reverse. It is useful for patients who
    are not able to ascend a ramp or hill without a

Hemiplegics chair
  • A chair that is designed to be low the ground,
    allowing propulsion with the non involved upper
    and lower extremity. Use low seat measurements.
    Some therapists do not choose to use these chairs
    since they feel it reinforces abnormal reflexes.
    The patient must have good perceptual motor

Amputee chair
  • For patients who have bilateral lower extremity
    amputation, the wheelchair has to be modified by
    placing the axis of the rear wheels back
    approximately 2 inches to increases the base of
    support in this direction. Without the change,
    the seated amputee has a high and posterior
    center of gravity compared to a non amputee and
    the chair could tip backwards more easily.

  • Lock extensions
  • Metal tubes placed over the standard lock to make
    it easier to lock the rear wheels appropriate for
    someone with arthritis or upper extremity
  • Wheel / rim covers
  • Using covers made of plastic or other material
    for increasing grip friction. It is common for
    patients who have a spinal cord injury or
  • Rim projections
  • Pegs placed vertically, obliquely or horizontally
    that allow patients with poor hand function to
    propel the chair. Horizontal or oblique pegs can
    widen the chair and may limit maneuvering in the

  • Detachable footrest
  • Needed for stand / pivot transfers.
  • Elevating leg rest
  • Raise the lower legs to assist with lower
    extremity circulation, edema prevention and
    orthostatic hypotension.
  • Removable arm rests
  • Needed for side transfers.
  • Adductor cushion or pommel
  • A cushion placed between the knees to try and
    control for adductor spasticity or contractures.
    Sometimes the entire seat unit is tilted backward
    10-15 degrees to help control for extensor
    spasticity or thrusting.

Standard wheelchair measurements for proper fit
Average adult size Instructions Part
19.5 - 20.5 inches Measure from the users heel to the popliteal fold and add 2 inches to allow clearance of the footrest Seat height / leg length
16 inches Measure from the users posterior buttock, along the lateral thigh, to the popliteal fold, then subtract approximately 2 inches to avoid pressure from the front edge of the seat against the popliteal space Seat depth
18 inches Measure the widest aspect of the users buttocks, hips or thighs and add approximately 2 inches this will provide space for bulky clothing, orthoses, or clearance of the trochanters from the armrest side panel. Seat width
16 - 16.5 inches Measure from the seat of the chair to the floor of the axilla with the users shoulder flexed to 90 degrees and then subtract approximately 4 inches. This will allow the final back height to be below the inferior angles of the scapulae. (Note this measurement will be affected if a seat cushion is to be used. The person should be measurement while seated on the cushion or the thickness of the cushion must be considered by adding that value to the actual measurement.) Back height
9 inches above the chair seat Measure from the seat of the chair to the olectanon process with the users elbow flexed to 90 degrees and then add approximately 1 inch. Armrest height
Wheelchair prescription depend upon many factors
  • Age, size weight
  • Disability prognosis
  • Functional skills
  • Indoor / outdoor use
  • Portability / accessibility
  • Reliability / durability
  • Cosmetic features
  • Options available
  • Service
  • Coast
  • Level of acceptance (Environment).

Additional considerations
  • Adult standard wheelchair specifications include
    seat width 18 inches, seat depth 16 inches
    and seat height 20 inches. Hemi-height
    wheelchairs have decreased seat height (17.5
    inches) to allow for propulsion using the
    unaffected foot.
  • Reclining wheelchairs allow intermittent or
    constant reclined positioning.
  • Tilt-in-space wheelchairs allow for a reclined
    position without loosing the required 90 degrees
    of hip flexion and 90 degrees of knee flexion.
    The entire chair reclines without any anatomical
    changes in positioning

Importance of good measurements
  • Good measurements has to be considered to avoid
    many problems
  • Too narrow seat
  • Uncomfortable.
  • Difficult access.
  • Developing pressure sores.
  • Too wide seat
  • Leaning to one side.
  • Promoting scoliosis.
  • Difficult propulsion.

  • Too shallow seat
  • Less area of contact
  • More pressures over soft tissues
  • Less support to feet legs
  • Poor balance
  • Too deep seat
  • Restricted leg circulations
  • Extended leg / forward slide in the chair
  • Difficult propulsion.
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