Advice Without Research Is Bad Advice
This is a post from a disabled forum. This person is looking for suggestions for his pressure issues and asymmetries. The forum has an SCI nurse that acts as a moderator. She gives medical advice and recommendations based on her personal opinions. Sometimes those personal opinions are based on, well I am not sure, but certainly not logic and common sense.
The moderator’s response to the inquiry demonstrates how ill informed and ignorant she is about our custom cushions, our cushions capabilities, our clinical case reports, clinical studies and actual healing results achieved by using our cushions. I feel her response is doing a disservice to the readers and it begs a response and clarification on our part.
I will show the inquiry post, the moderators response, and my comments.
Here is the inquiry:
I was wondering if you could recommend wheelchair cushion for post flap surgery. I’m looking for the best cushion but I am many years post injury and I sit with asymmetries where my hips are not level but there is some obliquity leaning to the right. Roho cushions don’t map that well with me.
I’m aware of three options:
-the dolphin cushion which apparently cost $30,000
-a custom cushion and wheelchair back from ride design which I think would cost around $7000?
-Air cushion from Aquila which is dynamic and cycles every minute I believe. I’m not sure if it would work for me because I have asymmetries.
I’m wondering if there are any other types of models that allow for pressure relief when a Roho does not work? Any information reports on any of this would be so welcome! Thank you very much
This is the response from the site moderator
“Which Roho cushion have you been evaluated on? Was it a Quatro? These can be customized much better than a standard Roho high profile.
“There is no way that anyone can recommend a proper cushion for you which would provide you the best pressure reduction. An OT or PT who is an expert in seating should be a part of your post-flap team and should assess your pressure profile on a variety of cushions, as well as seating systems.
I am not impressed with dynamic cushion systems such as the Aquila; our clinical assessments of these have shown they do not provide better pressure reduction than a properly fit static cushion, and their expense and need to be powered really don’t justify any possible benefit”.
Wow. I find it absurd that an SCI nurse actually feels a static, non-moving cushion gives better pressure reduction than our custom automatic cushion which alternates to provide pressure relief every 60 seconds.
Clearly the moderator is ignorant as to what our cushions have done and can do in terms of healing pressure sores. For a supposedly educated individual to say that our cushions do not provide better pressure reduction than a static cushion is just ridiculous. Even someone with no advanced education in seating can see the obvious advantage of our cushion over any static cushion on the market. This is just common sense. A static cushion just sits there doing nothing to benefit the user. A static cushion sits completely motionless exerting constant pressure to the persons posterior. Constant unrelieved pressure is the number one cause of pressure sores.
Static cushions actually contribute to pressure sores due to their inherent motionless design exerting constant pressure to the skin and tissue.
Any static cushion regardless of how well it “fits” the client cannot give pressure relief. Static cushions do not have the capability to change the constant pressure to the body. That’s why it is mandatory to do manual pressure lifts every 20 minutes when sitting on any static cushion and failure to do so can result in potentially deadly pressure sores.
The moderator has obviously has not taken an actual look at our cushion in action or visited the Aquila website to read the clinical studies page. She may not be aware that studies involving our cushions have been published in medical journals as well. One published study was written by a physician who had pressure sores himself before using the Aquila cushion.
The fact is Aquila wheelchair cushions have proven to have better pressure relieving and injury healing characteristics than any other wheelchair cushion on the market.
To further illustrate the vast advantage our cushion has over a static cushion our website shows a pressure mapping video of our cushion heads up against a Roho air floatation static cushion. It illustrates the degree of pressure relief attained with our automatic cushion versus the constant pressure of the static Roho cushion. The superiority of our cushion over a Roho is obvious.
To be fair, carving out a spot on a static cushion may create a well that will give a lower pressure reading at that one spot but the edge around the carve out will show higher pressure, (referred to as the donut effect) and the entire cushion exerts constant pressure so the user must still perform pressure lifts every 20 minutes.
I agree that our automatic cushions are more expensive than simple static cushions and they do operate on rechargeable batteries BUT the benefits of the Aquila cushions are clear. Those benefits being the countless pressure sores our cushions have healed and the improved quality of life for our clients.