Patient fitted with world’s most technologically advanced prosthetic leg
“Rehabilitation is a long and painful process, both psychologically and physically.”
Alan Denver, of Glenavy, Northern Ireland, has become the first patient to be fitted in Ireland with the world’s most technologically advanced microprocessor knee (MPK) – the Genium X3 – created by Ottobock, a manufacturer and supplier of pioneering prosthetic and orthotic technology.
Due to NHS funding limitations, Alan was not able to be fitted with the prosthesis in his local area and consequently travelled to the Ottobock | IDS clinic in Dublin, a provider of specialist prosthetic and orthotic clinical service to all over Ireland from Cappagh Hospital.
Alan was involved in a horrific motorbike accident which tore off his right leg just above his boot and caused compound fractures on his right arm. He had been out on his motorbike driving along a Northern Irish coastal road with two other friends when a car overtaking on a blind-corner collided with him head on. The bike instantly disintegrated on impact and the car was left completely unrecognisable.
Due to a sequence of fortunate events Alan’s life was saved. He was bleeding out at the scene but two junior doctors, one specialising in trauma and the other a surgeon, also happened to be on that same road and came to his aid. On top of that an Irish Coast Guard Search and Rescue helicopter (Rescue 116) was carrying out manoeuvres in the area and was therefore able to be diverted and quickly fly him to the Royal Victoria Hospital where a trauma team worked for over eight hours to save his life.
While recovering in hospital Alan researched what the best products available were to get him back to some kind of normality and came across Ottobock’s Genium X3. The prosthetic is the world’s most advanced computer controlled prosthetic leg, offering above-knee amputees more natural gait and physical capabilities than other prosthetic legs on the market.
The X3 is made of corrosion resistant materials and designed for military use, making it both durable and waterproof. The prosthetic is submersible up to three meters and virtually impenetrable by dust or dirt.
Alan’s prosthetist Donna Fisher said: “Rehabilitation is a long and painful process, both psychologically and physically. Alan was originally prescribed a mechanical leg which he found had some limitations and caused some issues. Since being fitted with the Genium X3, Alan has really experienced a dramatic change. He still has a long way to go, but you can really see how far he has come in just a short space of time”.
Jan Ottosson, Ottobock | IDS Clinical Services Director, commented: “The Genium X3 can determine in real time the resistance and support the user needs from the leg allowing them to keep up with everyday activities including running, walking backwards and stepping over obstacles in a natural way. It intuitively performs all of the actions we take for granted, such as climbing stairs step-over-step, locking when we stand still and even sitting comfortably with a crossed leg. Once Alan has mastered how to use the leg he will be able to live life how he wants without having to think about stumbles and falls no matter his pace or whether he is going up or down steps or an incline”.
Speaking of his experience, Alan said, “The X3 has not only boosted my confidence but also given me the reassurance I needed to know that while my life has changed I can still get on with my life and embark on new adventures. The X3 has allowed me to reclaim my life”.