Congratulations Grace  Norman on your recent ESPY award nomination!
Optimus Prosthetic patient Grace Norman has been nominated for a ESPY award for Best Female Athlete With a Disability. Be sure to vote for Grace. Click on the link below to place your vote.

Make sure to tune into the ESPYS on July 12 at 8 pm/7 pm  central on ABC.

Christy Bell: Progress Not Perfection

When Christy Bell learned that she had cancer, she was given 2 options. Either go through amputation or risk the cancer spreading eventually leading to her death. "I had the benefit of time to process my decision. I wasn't ready to leave [my life] yet! I have a beautiful 14 year old son and my family. I love what I do at work. I love my life so there was really no other choice for me. I was looking to gain my life back."
"I can remember sitting in the hospital [after amputation surgery] and thinking, not really registering everything at first, and then taking that first look down [at my residual limb] and realizing, 'Oh my God! This is real.' I was a mess, but then someone [Tim from Optimus] came in and had the conversation with me about the process [for getting a prosthesis]. They told me, 'You are going to walk again.' That was so inspiring to know that they cared enough to actually stop by and see me in the hospital and come to all my doctor's appointments." Being able to walk is so important to Christy as it allows her to live a more complete life, and that promise, that first glimpse of hope and what is possible became a mission and a vision for Christy.
Christy spoke candidly about what life as an amputee has been like for her. "In the beginning you wonder, 'Am I even a complete person anymore?' People will look at you differently, and it is usually out of their compassion, their caring, them 'feeling for you'. It's not because you are so different. As an amputee you are offering them a gift, the gift of inspiration. I show them it is possible to walk, to be functional, to work, to be a mother, to be a friend! Having a prosthesis gives you hope, and if you are surrounded by the right team of people, it will be easier than you thought it would ever be. It seems daunting until you take that first step and you see the hope in that."
The biggest lessons Christy has learned along her journey? "It takes time! Always be looking forward. It is about progress, not perfection. Every day, if you are taking a step forward mentally or even physically (and you must stay committed to doing this), that is all that matters. There IS a future! Celebrate the progress no matter how small the step. Always have a vision and expect the best. Ask yourself, 'What is it I really want?' Do you want to walk again? Then imagine what it will be like to walk again. It may be a little different, but you can still do it! My goal was to be walking in some way, shape, or form by May [2017], and I did that! It's funny, I have convinced myself that anything is possible. I have actually considered doing a half or full marathon or a 5K. These are things I had never really thought about before my surgery. I am stronger both mentally and physically than I was before. To me, that is a reward. There is a beauty in what I have learned here."
Christy has made such remarkable progress, and we are incredibly proud of her and honored to consider her part of our Optimus family. "I would absolutely recommend Optimus! I feel like you all know me. You took the time to get to know me. Jaimie helped me through this process. She treated me the same way she would want to be treated if our roles were reversed (what type of prosthesis would she want to wear and try to walk with). What more could you ask for in someone taking care of you? I am more than 'just another customer or patient'. The service, care, and compassion from the entire staff has been incredible! I don't think I would be this far along without you all. My prosthesis was customized just for ME. I never felt like it was a 'cookie-cutter' type of solution. It was built completely customized with me and my needs in mind. I cannot believe how easy you all have made this for me to feel complete both physically and emotionally." 

Employee Spotlight: Andrea Kinsinger

Andrea graduated from Physical Therapy school in 1986 from the Medical College of Ohio. One of the first amputees Andrea worked with was a teenager who lost both of his legs in a terrible lawn mower accident.  Andrea remembers how "thrilling" it was to be a part of helping him rise above such a traumatic event both emotionally and physically, and be able to get him walking again.

Some helpful advise Andrea would recommend to anyone that is a new amputee would be, patient with yourself and the rehabilitation process. Also work at it consistently; everyday can be another step toward you meeting your goals. She says "Don't let your limb loss define you!"

Andrea began working with amputees in 1990. "I loved it and threw myself into it, learning all I could about helping them return to an active lifestyle."   When asked what she loves about working with amputees she said: I love being a cheerleader for my patients and helping them to believe in themselves, and reach for high goals. Losing a limb is so traumatic; I love to be a part of helping the amputee become whole again.

What Andrea enjoys about Optimus is that "Optimus is a company of excellence with compassion." She enjoys that everyone knows their job and does it wholeheartedly because we truly care about the patients we serve. She states she has complete confidence in each person at Optimus, and knows that they are providing high quality, compassionate care to give our patients hope and a future.

Physical  Therapy Quick Tips
Activities for Prosthetic Training
The goal of "Quick Tips" is to provide helpful information and be a resource for those individuals helping patients fitted with prosthesis learn to use them correctly in order to enjoy a better quality of life as an amputee.
Forward Box Taps (Stool Stepping)
This is NOT a Forward Step Up Exercise!
The objective of the exercise is to get the patient to stand evenly on both legs with a stable object for the required assistance and safety. Place an object like a small step stool or box in front. The patient stands on the prosthesis and attempts to gently place the sound limb up onto stool or box in a slow, controlled manner (pause if needed) then return to the standing position. They should concentrate on keeping their hips even with each other, pelvis level and not leaning way over the prosthetic limb. Maintaining a backward force within the socket will help to maintain stability. Repeat 5-15 times. Do 1-3 sets.
Forward Box Taps
At first, there may be difficulty moving the sound limb in a slow, controlled manner and maintaining balance over the prosthesis. However, over time this exercise will help the patient develop skills needed to establish an equal stride length during walking. Proper prosthetic stance is also required for normalized gait and loading the prosthetic toe for toe clearance.
Andrea Kinsinger, PT
Andrea Kinsinger  has been a licensed Physical Therapist  since 1986.  Andrea has worked with lower extremity amputee patients throughout her career. She enjoys offering her expertise, advice, and support throughout the patient's rehabilitation. Feel free to contact Andrea if she can assist you in any way at:

In This Issue
Cincinnati Courses:

Course # 5
07/11  12:00 PM
Chateau at Mountain Crest

Course # 3
07/13 12:00 PM
TriHealth Rehab Hospital

Course # 4
07/18 12:00 PM
Christ Hospital Inpatient Dept

Course # 5
07/19 12:00 PM
Residence of Huntington Court

Course # 5
07/20 12:00 PM
Jewish Hospital Acute Care Rehab

Course # 2
07/25 12:00 PM
Harrison Pavillion Nursing and Rehab Center

Course # 1
07/27 12:00 pm
Pleasant Ridge Care Center

Columbus Courses:

Course # 8
07/06 12:00 PM
McNaughten Ridge Care Center

Course # 8
07/10 12:00 PM
The Laurels of Norworth

Course # 3
07/11 12:00 PM
Altercare of Canal

Course # 3
07/14 12:00 PM
Monterey Care Center

Optimus Prosthetics, Dayton
8517 North Dixie Drive, Suite 100/300
Dayton, Ohio 45414
(937) 454-1900

Optimus Prosthetics, Columbus
3132 Olentangy River Road
Columbus, Ohio 43202 
(614) 263-LIMB (5462)

Optimus Prosthetics, Cincinnati
4623 Wesley Avenue, Suite B
Cincinnati, OH 45212
(513) 918-2320
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