Best Picks 2014

Innovative Solutions as Selected by ATPs & Clinicians

ATPs & Clinicians Best PicksIn complex seating & mobility, innovation is in the eye of the beholder. A product that is the ideal solution for one involved client may not work at all for the next — and that’s not a reflection of the product, but rather the intensely individualized nature of the science of seating & mobility.

But just as a client case study can inspire wider-spread ideas, we hope our annual Best Picks will get gears turning for ATPs and clinicians. These products are in the 2014 spotlight thanks to the professionals who answered our question: What’s working well for you?

Now that we’ve heard from seating & mobility specialists, we’re asking the same question of consumers and their families. We’ll be posting results on our consumer Web site, TheMobilityProject.com. And we’ll update you in these pages as well.

Our thanks to all our participants this year and into the future.

— Laurie Watanabe


i-Drive Head Arrayi-Drive Head Array

I like the Sensor Engagement Setting in the computer interface to easily and separately adjust the sensitivity for each of the head array pads. The Double Tap Timing also allows us to set that for each client, which can be helpful for some patients. It has other features that are supposed to make driving more like driving a proportional system. We’ve used the Sensor Engagement Setting to assist many of my patients with operating the system better.

— Lauren Rosen, PT, MPT, MSMS, ATP/SMS, Motion Analysis Center Program Coordinator, St. Joseph’s Children’s Hospital of Tampa, Fla.

Stealth Products Inc.
(800) 965-9229
stealthproducts.com


Acta BackActa Back

Customer service is fantastic. Love [Comfort Company] products’ adjustability and durability.

— David Gurganus, ATP, RRTS, A&A Home Health Equipment, Hattiesburg, Miss.

Comfort Company
(800) 564-9248
comfortcompany.com


Zippie VoyageZippie Voyage

The Voyage is a project with Baby Jogger and it really made the cosmetics of a medical stroller better. The frame is easy to handle; the hardware seems to hold the auxiliary supports (lateral especially) better than previous models. My families have really liked it and it has been working well for many of my littlest clients.

— Lauren Rosen, PT, MPT, MSMS, ATP/SMS, Motion Analysis Center Program Coordinator, St. Joseph’s Children’s Hospital of Tampa, Fla.

The stroller folds easily, and the seating is easily removed. I also like the accessories for medical equipment, notably the Front Mount Utility Platform, the Rear Add-On Accessory Platform, and the Dovetail Vertical Mount for ventilators. Families also like the color choices and the cosmetics of the stroller.

— Elaine L. Rosen, PT, MPA/H, Equipment Clinic Coordinator/In-patient Supervisor, Franciscan Hospital for Children, Boston, Mass.

Sunrise Medical
(800) 333-4000
sunrisemedical.com


C300 Corpus 3GC300 Corpus 3G

Great electronics, great seating, great everything.

— David Gurganus, ATP, RRTS, A&A Home Health Equipment, Hattiesburg, Miss.

The C300 base Corpus 3G with power adjustable seat elevation has been extremely helpful for a child with spinal muscular atrophy to be able to turn on/off lights and brush his teeth at the sink.

— Karla Pezzarossi, DPT, Supervisor for Early Intervention Services, Children’s Village, Yakima Valley Memorial Hospital, Wash.

Permobil
(800) 736-0925
permobil.com


Q6 EdgeQ6 Edge

It is a well-balanced compact power base with great suspension, good power and seat heights. With cost-effective options and electronics that can be tweaked for performance, it is a can-offer opportunity without much compromise to the end users driving it.

— James Foster, physiotherapist, Durable Medical Equipment New Zealand

Quantum Rehab
(866) 800-2002
quantumrehab.com


JAY ZipJAY Zip

For its incontinence cover and extra cover. I look forward to the same cover with a bit more contouring for young children in the future.

— Karla Pezzarossi, DPT, Supervisor for Early Intervention Services, Children’s Village, Yakima Valley Memorial Hospital, Wash.

Sunrise Medical
(800) 333-4000
sunrisemedical.com


M300 Corpus HDM300 with Corpus 3G

The ability to specify the seat width separately from the back width enables you to keep the overall width of the chair narrower for most customers. The ability to specify it with 6" caster wheels enables you to have the footplate at a tighter angle, shortening the overall length and compacting the turning radius. I’ve provided dozens of customers with this power wheelchair, and none have been disappointed. This is currently the gold standard for Group 3 mid-wheeldrive power wheelchairs.

— Luke Moore, ATP/SMS, CRTS, Provider Plus Inc., St. Louis, Mo.

Permobil
(800) 736-0925
permobil.com


Aero TAero T

The wheelchairs TiLite manufactures are truly custom configured, and the Aero T is no exception. The extra rigidity provided by the dual-tube frame design increases propulsion efficiency over mono-tube frames, and the available adjustability in rear seat height and caster angle makes it a great chair for customers with new injuries. The order form is longer than most, but take your time, go through it completely, and you’ll be pleased with the finished product. Get it with the titanium rounded rigidizer bar for a particularly elegant look.

— Luke Moore, ATP/SMS, CRTS, Provider Plus Inc., St. Louis, Mo.

TiLite
(800) 545-2266
tilite.com


RogueRogue

Ki’s K0005 manual wheelchairs: Adjustments are simple, customer service is fantastic.

— David Gurganus, ATP, RRTS, A&A Home Health Equipment, Hattiesburg, Miss.

Ki Mobility
(800) 981-1540
kimobility.com


Custom Molded SeatingCustom Molded Seating

I use Prairie Seating for our custom molds. Their cushions are clean and tight, the laterals smoothly shaped and thin so that the client does not experience the irritation of excessively thick supports. They are an awesome company to work with and always help us when needed. Definitely a Best Pick for me.

— Thana A. France, ATP/SMS, CRTS, Seating & Mobility Specialist, Browning’s Health Care, Orlando, Fla.

Prairie Seating Corp.
(800) 588-0071
prairieseating.com


AllTrack R3AllTrack R3

This is an awesome, very sturdy chair for the client that needs to be able to use their power chair indoors and out. The area I am in is rural, farm country, and the Amysystems is perfect for this and can be funded through Medicare and Medicaid. It is available with power tilt and recline.

— Karen Bussey, ATP, Target Medical Sales, Smith’s Grove, Ky.

Amysystems
(888) 453-0311
amysystems.com


SmartDriveSmartDrive

Innovative, lightweight power assist for a manual wheelchair user who is capable of independent propulsion, but is limited by pain, fatigue or upper-extremity issues. User controls the cruise speed of the SmartDrive by the speed of the push, varying from 1/2 to 5 1/2 mph. Requires the user to have reasonable fine-motor or wrist movement to activate/deactivate the power button. This product is applicable to decrease pain and increase functional distances for a manual wheelchair user.

— Lois Brown, MPT, ATP/SMS

Max Mobility
800-637-2980
max-mobility.com


AirLogic Trunk SupportAirLogic Trunk Support

This is a great shoulder harness for women. Along with keeping the shoulders back, it allows air to flow around it. Also, their Web site is very easy to navigate, and their quote system is very easy and quick, and you get three different sheets for insurance purposes.

— Karen Bussey, ATP, Target Medical Sales, Smith’s Grove, Ky.

Adaptive Engineering Lab
(866) 656-1486
AELseating.com


ContourUContourU

This molding system for the customization that can occur with the molding bag process and then being able to use that molding for either the ContourU or a more detailed mold for the (Invacare Corp.) Silhouette cushion.

— Karla Pezzarossi, DPT, Supervisor for Early Intervention Services, Children’s Village, Yakima Valley Memorial Hospital, Wash.

Freedom Designs
(800) 331-8551
freedomdesigns.com


JAY GSJAY GS

We generally buy it by piece and change out the gel for an Akton grid pad or Gel Ovations. We deal with many children, and try as we might, they grow. With all of the accessories available, we can keep the kid in the cushion for quite a few years. The well depth can be heightened for a small child, and all of the positioning accessories can be moved on Velcro to grow the cushion. You can cut LLD cuts, shorten the femur length, do pelvic obliquity accommodations and glue it back together if you have had a bad day with the turkey knife (however, suggestions on replacements of the turkey knife would be welcome).

I know that there are a few newer cushions that have places to put in adductors, hip guides, etc., but the options for the locations are limited. With the funding as limited as it is, this cushion gives you a lot of bang for your buck — especially for kids, when the funding source laughs at you because whatever you supplied only lasted two years. We get good positioning, good pressure relief and major adjustability with this base.

— Ellen Russell, ATP, CRTS, Matheny Rehab, Peapack, N.J.

Sunrise Medical
(800) 333-4000
sunrisemedical.com


Matrix Easy FitMatrix Easy Fit

It’s adjustable in all directions; it provides appropriate support and pressure relief because it becomes the perfect patient mold. You can see through the Matrix to determine that it is fitting the client. It handles difficult positioning issues such as limited hip flexion, and it doesn’t matter what size or shape your patient is. It is really valuable for pediatric clients, as you can continue to adjust the product as your patients’ needs change without having to buy a new product. I really like that the Matrix never needs to be sent away to be formed. It is formed and mounted to the wheelchair on site at the time of evaluation.

— Jamie Loper, ATP, Executive Director of Operations, Gator Custom Mobility, Gainesville, Fla.

Matrix Seating USA
(800) 986-9319
matrixseatingusa.com


Generation NXTGeneration NXT

Great customer service, simple adjustment, great warranty.

— David Gurganus, ATP, RRTS, A&A Home Health Equipment, Hattiesburg, Miss.

Freedom Designs
(800) 331-8551
freedomdesigns.com


Accu-Fit BackAccu-Fit Back

I wouldn’t put this on an ultralight chair, but for positioning it gives you a huge amount of wiggle room. You can have any width and any height. You can choose the standard-sized laterals, which can be moved in and out, up or down individually — or make your own size, but if you screwed up and have tools, it’s an easy fix. You can start the laterals at the bottom of the back or raise them for redundant tissue. You can get between the rails on the back or full width and change the angle from standard to whatever you want. Pick your foam from a large variety of quality choices. Pour a foam-in-place and if you don’t like it, slide it out and do it over. There is a large choice of fabrics for covers and a new over-cover that can be removed and washed and is almost idiot proof when putting it back on (I say “almost idiot proof“ because everyone in the industry knows what I mean). If you want a back that you can do almost anything with, this one works great.

— Ellen Russell, ATP, CRTS, Matheny Rehab, Peapack, N.J.

Innovative Concepts
(800) 676-5030
icrehab.com


Micro Mini JoystickMicro Mini Joystick

Very small compact proportional control designed for operation using one finger with very slight motion or force. Functions very similar to an isometric driver control. Often mounted in a tray, hand platform or with the new ring mount (pictured). Intended for individuals with disabilities that lead to profound weakness: SMA, MD, ALS.

— Mike Babinec, OTR/L, ABDA, ATP Global Product Manager/Wheelchair Electronics, Invacare Corp.

Adaptive Switch Laboratories
(800) 626-8698
asl-inc.com


TWISTTWIST

For its customization and light weight for young children with myelomeningocele.

— Karla Pezzarossi, DPT, Supervisor for Early Intervention Services, Children’s Village, Yakima Valley Memorial Hospital, Wash.

TiLite
(800) 545-2266
tilite.com


Mustang Gait TrainerMustang Gait Trainer

Much more compact compared to large Bronco styles.

— Karla Pezzarossi, DPT, Supervisor for Early Intervention Services, Children’s Village, Yakima Valley Memorial Hospital, Wash.

Snug Seat
(800) 336-7684
snugseat.com


Quadtro Select Low ProfileQuadtro Select Low Profile

This is still my best cushion for pressure spread and comfort. It is my go-to cushion for people who have tried “everything” before and can’t get comfortable, as I can accommodate or correct pelvic position without restricting function.

— James Foster, physiotherapist, Durable Medical Equipment New Zealand

ROHO Inc.
(800) 851-3449
roho.com


Spinergy LXSpinergy LX
Schwalbe Marathon
Natural-Fit Handrim

Sadly these days, it is not about what my Best Pick is as it is what we can get funded. We always offer the clients the ability to upgrade to lighter, cooler, more fun stuff . If funding was not an issue, my Best Picks are a Spinergy LX wheel with Schwalbe Marathon [tire] and Natural-Fit handrim.

— Thana A. France, ATP/SMS, CRTS, Seating & Mobility Specialist, Browning’s Health Care, Orlando, Fla.

Natural-Fit HandrimOut-Front
(Natural-Fit Handrim)
(480) 833-1829
out-front.com

Schwalbe Tires
(888) 700-5860
schwalbetires.com

Spinergy
(303) 915-6534
spinergy.com


JAY Fusion with Air InsertJAY Fusion with Air Insert

I have found this to be one of the most common choices for my clients with nearly all diagnoses. People with or without sensation benefit greatly. It has excellent pressure reduction and distribution properties, can be somewhat custom configured, and is (yes, I am going to use this word) “really comfortable” according to the majority of patients who try it. My clients with poor trunk control find it to be much more stable when using the air insert rather than fluid, which I find is an interesting outcome.

— Jill Monger, PT, MS, ATP, Coordinator of Wheelchair Seating & Mobility Clinic, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston

Sunrise Medical
(800) 333-4000
sunrisemedical.com


TRU-Balance 3 Power Positioning SystemTRU-Balance 3

Not only can you order the seat width independent of the back width, but you can also easily retrofit the TB3 power tilt, recline and scissor lift systems onto the client’s existing Quantum Q6 Edge as needed. TB3 achieves 50° of tilt, up to 175° of recline and 10" of lift, all without increasing the seat-to-floor height. These power seat functions can be ordered separately or as a combination with tilt and recline; lift and tilt; or lift, tilt and recline. All TB3 power positioning systems come standard with cantilever armrests that can be easily rotated internally or externally, with the user in the chair and the tools provided for optimal positioning. In addition, fine tuning adjustments in seat width, depth and center of gravity position over the base, as well as back height, width and depth, are also easily made to achieve the exact fit customers are looking for without spending additional time or resources trying to achieve that goal.

Quantum Rehab
(866) 800-2002
quantumrehab.com


Pacer Gait TrainerPacer Gait Trainer

For its depth of adjustability as function changes.

— Karla Pezzarossi, DPT, Supervisor for Early Intervention Services, Children’s Village, Yakima Valley Memorial Hospital, Wash.

Rifton Equipment
(800) 571-8198
rifton.com


Adjust-a-PLUSHAdjust-a-PLUSH

The narrow size for younger children provides lateral control if needed or a more open concept for allowing visual gaze.

— Karla Pezzarossi, DPT, Supervisor for Early Intervention Services, Children’s Village, Yakima Valley Memorial Hospital, Wash.

Sunrise Medical
(800) 333-4000
sunrisemedical.com


Pilot Car SeatPilot Car Seat

For light-weight ease of transferability for larger children with fair ability to sit with just the positioning harness in addition to the car seatbelt.

— Karla Pezzarossi, DPT, Supervisor for Early Intervention Services, Children’s Village, Yakima Valley Memorial Hospital, Wash.

Snug Seat
(800) 336-7684
snugseat.com


Q-Logic 2 with SCIM ModuleQ-Logic 2 with SCIM Module

The Q-Logic 2 has many enhancements built into the new system. The new hand control provides a larger screen on the hand control and provides a Bluetooth chip (standard) with the Q-Logic 2 Expandable electronics hand control. The Bluetooth chip allows access to smart phones, many different tablets and computers. The SCIM Module (Specialty Control Input Module) allows a specialty input device to be attached and programmed for use with the Q-Logic 2 system without needing an enhanced display to be purchased. The SCIM module plugs into the system and utilizes the display on the Q-Logic hand control. This allows an individual who fatigues during the day to use the proportional hand control in the morning, and when their arm/hand fatigues, they can switch to their specialty control input method.

Quantum Rehab
(866) 800-2002
quantumrehab.com


Door Opening SystemDoor Opening System

While the Open Sesame Door System is not new to the marketplace, it has gone through several innovations that make it noteworthy. At the “touch of a button,” the wheelchair rider is able to unlatch their locked door, open it, enter or exit their home, close it and relock the door independently. It comes standard with a remote control, similar to a garage door opener, which can be hand held or mounted to the wheelchair. Open Sesame also offers remote controls that can be connected to specialty switches and power wheelchair controls, or customized to operate with alternative activation devices such as X-10 home control systems or other environmental controls to accommodate individuals with a range of disabilities.

The Open Sesame Door System is battery powered and includes a plug-in wall transformer and low-voltage wiring kit that constantly charges the internal battery. This operates off a standard electrical outlet, and the system now has a standard built-in battery backup in the event of a power outage. This important safety feature provides the wheelchair user with full power operation of their door, allowing them to get in and out of their home for several hours.

— Julie Piriano, PT, ATP/SMS, Director of Rehab Affairs, Pride Mobility Products/Quantum Rehab

Open Sesame
(800) OPEN-911
opensesamedoor.com

This article originally appeared in the July 2014 issue of Mobility Management.

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