After four years or so I felt as if I was sometimes carrying the braces around instead of them helping me to get around. They seemed heavier than before. Of course I was getting weaker. I saw the man who had ordered the braces but he gave me very minimal time and said they were fine. I decided to persist and so ended up at a brace establishment closer to home. There I met Warren. He listened to me for half an hour at least as I told him how the braces were making me feel and what kind of life I still intended to lead (not on the shelf). I also mentioned how I wished I could wear a smaller shoe size. My foot is a size 6 and I was wearing size 9 and 91/2 shoes. I am braced way under my toes.
When I went back to get my new braces and tried them on it was so neat. They were lighter and a bit thinner under the toes but still supported me very well. I now can wear a size 81/2 shoe. I no longer felt my braces were sapping my strength.
These last two years my falls have been coming more frequently. Thankfully I’ve not broken any bones. But since my arms are to the point I can no longer pick myself up it means when I fall I have to call my husband home from work. His employer is very understanding, but the falls are no fun for him or me. I have purchased a transfer belt from the local nursing home which has been a huge assist to both my husband and I when I fall. After my last fall I realized my left foot was not picking up as good as it previously had.
So back to talk to Warren. He said, “I can help you with that.” When I went back for the new brace and tried it out I was overjoyed. Warren had added a strip of plastic 6x1inch right above the heel to the back of the brace and cut them down by ½ inch so the weight remained the same. He told me that as a person gets weaker carbon can be added to the plastic to make the braces even lighter. The left leg and foot felt so good I asked him to make one for the right. I have not fallen since and now realize that many or perhaps all of my falls could have been prevented if I would have had these braces sooner.
On to my daughter experience. She got her first pair of braces and I noticed they were thinner like my second pair. Other than that I didn’t really take note of them. They were her braces and she was happy with what they did for her. She doesn’t wear her braces as much as I do mine because she lives in a townhouse and as you know, if you wear braces, it’s not easy to go up and down stairs with them on.
After three years or so she began having trouble with her feet. She doctored for this malady and still is. She decided to try a new brace person. She got blessed as I did when I met Warren. This man said it was no wonder she was having foot problems. As I stated before she has high arches. Her first braces had no arch in at all! She now has a new pair of course and can really tell the difference.
How could a thing like this happen? All we can figure is someone in the process wasn’t paying attention to what he or she was doing. How sad when a mistake like this affects someone’s life as it has my daughters.
As I said I am writing this to help others who have braces or will get them in the future. A point I should make is that both my daughter and I have custom made braces. This means they take a cast of your leg and foot so the brace will be exactly what you need.
Should my daughter have realized her braces needed an arch because she had one? Perhaps, but she went to a clinic attached to a major hospital, the one were she sees the neurologist who understands CMT. She felt they were professionals and therefore knew what they were doing. That is another reason I’ve written of our experiences. Don’t be afraid to ask what may seem like a silly question and tell the professionals you deal with exactly what you need. If you don’t feel you are getting what you need from them seek someone else and you will find your Warren.
Asim stated "The prices are reasonable and Warren has been very considerate and professional."Since Warren has rebuilt the braces, Asim has had little to no problems. If a new screw is needed or any other adjustment, Asim is welcome to stop in and have the repairs made.
Asim continues to be a patient of Warren's and is very satisfied with the result.
"He has gone out of his way to be helpful. He seems like family to me now." said Asim
I’m 61 yrs old and have CMT. I’m on my third pair of braces. My daughter is 37 yrs old. She also has CMT and is on her second pair of braces. We have learned a lot from having these braces and I am writing this in the hopes that our experiences will help others.
Both my daughter and I have high arches and have been lucky enough that our braces have not needed adjustments, but as you’ll see as our story of bracing unfolds things have not all been as rosy as one would hope for when being braced.
My first pair of braces seemed like a miracle. I had much better balance when wearing them and could walk much faster. However, I soon found out the faster I walked the faster I tired out. I have been very lucky because I can endure wearing braces for many hours at a time.
Asim has been a patient of Warren's since 2005. He was new to Willmar and Warren was recommended to him by a physical therapist in the area. Asim was struck with polio at a very young age. When he first came to see Warren he also had a fused ankle following a fracture that was causing swelling and pain during movement . Warren casted Asim's leg and used a mold created from the cast to fabricate an AFO (Ankle, Foot Orthosis). It was attached to a brace Asim already had. Warren also repaired other older HKAFO (Hip, Knee, Ankle, Foot Orthosis) braces that Asim had in his possession, but was unable to wear because they had worn-out from use..