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Toby Bird's Story

I am 23 years old from Newcastle NSW and lost my right leg in a car accident back in 2012. I was on the Össur Mauch Knee until about 8 months ago, when I was fitted the RHEO KNEE 3 on the Vari-Flex by Paul Nixon at APC prosthetics.

In the Since I was fitted with the RHEO KNEE 3, living as an amputee has improved my life so much in every way. I have never felt confident on my prosthetic leg until now – I can walk with so much more speed, stability and confidence on any type of terrain and I love how responsive the RHEO KNEE 3 is with everything that I do. I have a much more natural walking style, walking requires a lot less energy and effort than before. I can now walk for hours in comfort.

With all the extra confidence and stamina I have obtained with the RHEO KNEE, I am so much more active at the gym and socially, I can keep up with my mates. I am currently studying my certificate III & IV in fitness, this is something I have always wanted to do, but have not been confident enough to actually go ahead with.

All of this has also had such a positive impact on my partner, family and friends because I am a much more active and happy person. I also have a 3 week old baby girl which I can confidently hold in my arms without the thought of falling – this is a great feeling. The RHEO KNEE 3 has not once let me down, I am back to all my usual activities; bike riding, bush walking, walking to my old fishing spots, etc. I am now always keen to do basically anything alive and outdoors.

The RHEO KNEE really has helped me get my life back to 'normal' in so many ways. The foam protective cover is great, to kneel down on and just for looks in long pants in the wind and especially in shorts, to make me look more balanced.

Stories from the team at APC Prosthetics

The team at APC Prosthetics have had many years of experience working with microprocessor knee units (MPKs). For those that aren’t familiar; MPKs incorporate sensors that feed through a microprocessor which, in turn controls how the knee joint functions in response. This technology has been around for over 30 years now and is continually evolving to provide the most sophisticated control of the knee joint resulting in energy efficient, reliable and safe walking for our valued clients.

One of the most recent and technologically advanced MPK is the RHEO KNEE 3. This is the only MPK to incorporate Magnetorheologic fluid which, aside from sounding like something out of a Sci-Fi movie, is known to create far less resistance during the swing phase of walking than hydraulic fluid. In short, this improves energy efficiency, walking speed and allows for a more natural gait.

We wanted to share the story of two of our clients here at APC Hunter who have been fitted with their new prostheses incorporating RHEO KNEE 3.

The first gentleman is Mick: husband, father of 2 adolescent children, Work Health and Safety manager for a large coal company. Mick is an active person; whether it be carrying out maintenance work on his home, kayaking, walking the dog or helping out at the local AFL club. Since his amputation 7 years ago, Mick has managed to get back to work and many of the activities and duties required of him. At the end of the day however, he constantly found himself tired, sore and desperate to take his prosthesis off. Since the fitting of his new prosthesis incorporating RHEO KNEE 3, Mick finds that not only is he able to do more functionally (walking, working, etc.), he can be active with his family after work and doesn’t feel completely exhausted at the end of the day.

The second gentleman is 23 year old, Toby. Toby and his partner have recently welcomed their baby girl into the world. Other than being a doting father, Toby is studying to be a personal trainer and enjoys many different high energy activities such as MotoX, spearfishing, camping, walking and going to the gym.

Toby comments that since the fitting of his new prosthesis incorporating RHEO KNEE 3, he doesn’t have to second guess whether the knee joint is going to fail on him. Toby has been able to significantly increase his walking speed and distance – his partner now has to keep up with him when they are on walks together! Perhaps most significantly, Toby comments that he does not have the soreness he did previously in his sound side knee and ankle at the end of a long day. This is incredibly important for a young man: looking after the sound limb now will greatly improve his quality of life in later years.