Monday, June 29, 2009

Her first lift.

A recent visit to the prosthetist resulted in Emily's first lift. As you can see above, a molded, hard plastic AFO (Ankle Foot Orthotic) combined with a three cm lift on the right shoe of her stylish pink New Balance has her a little closer to even than she was before. The AFO produces the stability she needs, and the lift cuts into that seven cm discrepancy between the two legs. 
In the few days we've had this, she's tried it out a few times, struggling to get used to the rigid ankle joint and added weight. Of course, she's still not even 11-months old, so she's still figuring out how all her own parts work. Tack on the fact that it's summer, and the thought of putting her in knee socks, a brace and sneakers seems somewhat, I don't know...un-American? Does that work? Sure, why not. 
Anyway, with this new lift, we've got our first bit of doctor-to-doctor controversy. We were in touch with Dr. Paley recently, updating him as to Emily's progress. Paley came back with an e-mail suggesting we should really come in for an MRI (to get an accurate measurement of the discrepancy) and a consultation so HE can put together a proper lift for her. Now, if you'll recall, Paley is located in West Palm Beach, so shooting down for an appointment is going to take more than an afternoon. But he's the best in the world with this stuff. This is our daughter. What would YOU do? Exactly. We're flying down in August. 
Paley's belief is that Ems should have a lift on her shoe that is whatever-the-discrepancy-is, minus one cm. With the current estimation, that would double the size of the lift she currently has. This, of course, flies in the face of what Dr. DeLuca has us doing. DeLuca's contention is that a bigger lift would add bulk and weight, making it difficult for Ems to get around. Valid point. Let's get it on! 
Not much we can do in the meantime. We'll continue to give her opportunities to try out this new lift. And she'll get used to it. And she'll continue to get stronger. And more confident. And more amazing. It's kinda her thing.


Sarah Kristiansen said...

Look. At. Her. She looks great in that fancy shoe!! And I think it's great that you are going to see Paley next month too...we'd be doing exactly the same thing. =) Go Ems, GO!

AS said...

I've been waiting for this! Did Mom pick the perfect shoe or what?
I'm with Sa, I'd go see the miracle worker too...any chance I got. Good post and thanks.