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Muscular dystrophy patient develops aids to help him on daily tasks

Shared by Rita Torrao on 2018-09-18 16:37

About the solution

Despite living with limb-gridle muscular dystrophy, Mr Gemmell, a 70-year-old from Bethlehem, spent his life sailing and swimming. During the last years, he has designed and built aids to help him with daily tasks.
Mr Gemmell noticed something was not right with him since he was 8 and had trouble playing physical sport at school but he was only diagnosed at age 36. Mr Gemmell’s disease is an inherited progressive disorder that weakens and wastes away his muscles conditioning his daily life. As he has always been a very active person, and the only help he was provided with was a chair with four extendable legs, he decided to create aid devices to help him on a daily basis.
Mr Gemmell developed a sling arm and a dancing pole that could help him on his everyday activities, like pouring a glass of water or pick up a salt-shaker. The arm sling helps him to pick up items while the dancing pole facilitates the use of his arm while in the kitchen.
"I wouldn't be where I am today without them," he said.
"I'm going to need to find an engineering company in Tauranga and look at how we can improve the aids," he said. Now that he can use the aids to help him, he would like the devices to reach more patients.

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This solution shall not include mention to the use of drugs, chemicals or biologicals (including food); invasive devices; offensive, commercial or inherently dangerous content. This solution was not medically validated. Proceed with caution! If you have any doubts, please consult with a health professional.

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About the author

Ross Gemmell, originally from Bethlehem, is a 70-year-old now living in Tauranga, New Zealand. Ever since school Mr Gemmell had trouble playing physical sport, but only at 36 he was diagnosed with limb-girdle muscular dystrophy. This disease causes weakness and wasting of the muscles in the arms and legs. To help him cope with daily tasks, Mr Gemmell designed and built aids.

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