Doug Stone had his right leg amputated below the knee on March 16, 2018, due to an infected diabetic ulcer. “When the bottom of my foot got infected, the medical staff tried to cut my small toe and skin off my foot to try to stop the infection. They also used a wound vac to try to pull the infection out of my foot. This went on for a week to week and a half. The infection started traveling up the back of my leg and that is when they determined they needed to amputate.”
Our practitioners, Amy Yates, CPO, and Glenn Schober, CP, were the first to meet Doug after his surgery. “They would come visit me in the hospital just about every day to help comfort me and talk to me and to help keep my spirits up. My biggest impression about Optimus was not really about Optimus so much as it was about Amy. When I first met her, I did not know she was an amputee! It was a few visits later when I was asking questions about the prosthetic process and she showed me her prosthesis. I thought this was awesome because you couldn’t tell she had one! Optimus has meant a lot to me in the process of getting my prosthetic leg. Their staff is very experienced and knowledgeable. Everyone that works there has been very friendly and caring throughout my process.”
Doug is a bit of a bowling legend in his community. He followed in his father’s footsteps and taught bowling at the local junior high. “I can still do anything that I did prior to my amputation. I can still bowl, go fishing, coach bowling, and I can still put my boat in the water by myself. It may take a little bit of a different approach with a prosthetic leg but anything can still be done. Whatever you put your mind to, it can happen! I have had my challenges though. I remember when I was in physical therapy at Kettering Hospital, I had a friend there that was talking about how difficult it was going to be to get back into my truck when I got out. She said that I would probably swing like a monkey trying to get in the truck, and sure enough, the first day I got home and tried to get into my truck basically, I swung like a monkey. It was kind of funny, but that was the start of the process on how to do things differently to make them happen.”
Doug has some advice to offer to others going through an amputation. “The best advice you can give someone who is pending an amputation would be that they are going to be fine, and they have to keep positive thoughts about everything they have done in the past. Everything they did then, they will be able to do with a prosthesis. I hope one day to have the opportunity to talk to others diagnosed with diabetes. I would talk to them about taking care of themselves, checking their sugar regularly, and to check any sores on their feet. They should take care of themselves so something like this doesn’t happen to them. I have heard some people say that nothing like this could happen to them, or they are not worried, but I am proof that something like this can happen.”
Thanks, Doug for sharing your story. We are so proud of the progress you have made, and can’t wait to see what new accomplishments you achieve.