New prosthetic leg transforms woman’s life
Whether it’s climbing up the side of the O2 Arena in Greenwich or scaling the heights of a treetop assault course, nothing is too big a challenge for Grace Matthews.
Which is remarkable, considering her world changed drastically less than two years ago after a devastating injury during a match.
Playing in the front row for Bletchley Ladies, Grace, 26, dislocated her knee during a game against Olney, an injury that eventually led to her losing her leg above the knee and resulting in needing a prosthetic leg.
Despite this, she adapted to her new life quickly, getting used to walking again using the prosthesis.
However, it wasn’t until she received her Ottobock C-Leg 4, a microprocessor knee (MPK) designed to help above-knee amputees walk with a more stable and efficient gait, that her perspective on life changed.
“When I first tried the C-Leg 4 I was astounded, I couldn’t believe there was a product out there like it. Before, with my old prosthesis, I didn’t know any different and figured ‘this was it, this is as good as it gets.’ But the C-Leg 4 has transformed my life,” Grace said.
“I’ve been doing all kinds of things that I would never have even considered before my amputation.
“Something like this changes your outlook on life, and I just appreciate it a whole lot more.”
Most recently, Grace, who works as a customer experience co-ordinator for the National House-Building Council (NHBC), took on the challenge of a Go Ape treetop challenge, using her C-Leg 4 across zip-wires, netting and rope bridges.
Grace commented: “It was absolutely brilliant, I crossed a rope bridge and my C-Leg took my entire weight on this thin piece of rope. It was incredible!”
Enjoying hiking, climbing and abseiling, Grace also plays badminton, regularly hits the gym and hopes to return to rugby one day once she feels she’s mastered her new prosthesis.
“I know it’s got me at all times, like having a safety net. But it continues to surprise me with its performance. I can’t wait to get started planning more adventures,” she added.
Grace got her C-Leg through the NHS England’s MPK policy, which has been in place since 2016 and is open to through-knee, above-knee and hip disarticulation amputees who meet the qualifying criteria.
Ottobock is a supplier of innovative and practical solutions that restore human mobility and help people to rediscover personal independence. Its wide product range includes prosthetic and orthotic components, wheelchairs, rehabilitation and mobility products.