The FES Really Changed My Life
The FES really changed my life. I am quite sure it was the Functional Electrical Stimulator otherwise known as an FES. Originally fitted in December 2014. I immediately stopped falling over with monotonous regularity. Instead I stayed upright, it changed my life for the better . So many people commented that I looked better and happier. The stressed and strained look on my face disappeared. Suddenly I felt rejuvenated in so many ways but I still had MS.
The FES really changed my life
It did take me a few weeks to learn to position the electrodes on my left leg in the correct places.
I soon realised that buying 10 batteries through Amazon was cheaper than 2 batteries from any local shop. I needed surgical tape and a stretchy tubigrip to extend the life of the sticky electrodes.
The Neurological Centre in Queens Square, London was unbelievably kind and helpful. Nothing was too much trouble.
I had a regular check-up in early February 2016. By now I was a confident user. I really did not think much more could be done to make things better. I thought it would be a quick in and out appointment; instead it was an hour long. They checked my walking with and without the FES and checked the stimulation to the muscles was correct.
At the end of the session the physiotherapist offered me something to put inside each shoe that lifted both heels by 7 mm. This reduced the possibility of my knee hyperextending; it would make walking easier.
The physio also told me to walk upright and stop leaning forward. The higher heels would make this easier and stop me feeling as if I was about to fall over backwards. By the way they reallydo work.
There is a down side
This was all really good news but… I have learned to accept that I need a stick or rollator to walk. I grudgingly accept that double vision has stopped me driving. MS has had a huge impact on mine and the wife’s life. Nonetheless I can usually park the MS.
Its last thing at night and first thing in the morning that MS is rammed down my throat. Taking the electrodes off at night and then staggering through to the bathroom to rinse them. Putting the electrodes onto my left leg and thigh on in the morning and wiring it up.
It‘s worth it
The price is only half an hour a day but it is a twice daily reminder. In a few years the frustration and angst will become inconsequential. My SPMS started in 2000 but the FES only happened in December 2014 Sadly MS never goes away.