Steps Charity - UK

Informative film to assist managing a child’s planned amputation

The national charity working for all those whose lives are affected by childhood lower limb conditions.

Years: 2018, 2019

Steps is the national charity working for all those whose lives are affected by childhood lower limb conditions. Whatever the lower limb condition, whatever the stage of life and whatever the reason, Steps is there for those families.  Working closely with the NHS, Steps will produce a short film to provide parents with all the information they need making the difficult decision to amputate, the process and rehabilitation and life with a prosthesis.

 

Based on the feedback received from parents of amputee children and health professionals, there is currently a lack of emotional and practical support for families that decide to have an elective amputation, whether this is caused by a congenital condition, trauma or illness. This is particularly true of families that come from a disadvantaged background or for families from ethnic minorities.

Steps have also identified that many parents of children with limb differences never meet other children with similar disabilities during their rehabilitation. This can lead to feelings of isolation and ultimately to depression. The aim of the video is to reassure parents that they are not alone in facing their journey and also to provide practical advice. The video will motivate parents to encourage their children to participate in sporting activities specifically created for young amputees. Actively participating in these sport events and meeting other young amputees will help with self-efficacy, self-esteem and self-worth and lead to lifelong friendships.

 

The video will be divided in four main sections: 

1. Emotional support (from diagnosis to amputation): Emotional preparation for an amputation Will it hurt? Will I be able to walk? How will I cope at school? Will the other children like me? Will I be able to play all their games? Admission to Hospital: Talking to consultants, understanding the risks of surgery, types of amputations and reconstruction, surgery and returning to the Ward.
2. Practical and psychological support after amputation: Body Image: Prostheses: Going back to school.
3. Life after amputation: Stump Care: Phantom Pain and Stump Pain: Medication: ‘Self Help’: Surgery: Caring for the remaining leg: Taking part in sport activities – in partnership with LimbPower.
4. Life for an amputee in developing countries: Follow the story of one British family who donated their son’s prosthesis to a boy in Africa in partnership with Legs4Africa. 

 

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