An Acorn Stairlift provided the ‘happy ending’ to the latest episode of enthralling Channel 4 documentary series “24 Hours in A&E”, which featured the case of an 84-year-old man who fell backwards down the stairs.
Despite his years, the retired London horticulturalist was fit and active prior to the accident, although he had been diagnosed with a heart condition and was waiting for an operation to have stents fitted.
Speaking during the programme, injured Neil (pictured right) told his worried wife Jenny: “My leg just buckled on me and I couldn’t find anything to get hold of…”.
He had toppled backwards down the flight of 11 stairs, causing a serious injury to his left shoulder. Jenny, who had been watching TV downstairs, said: “I heard this enormous wail of saying ‘Oh no!’… and then the crash. I really thought he had broken his neck. I was absolutely horrified.”
Neil was rushed by ambulance to the busy A&E department of St George’s Hospital, where the popular Channel 4 programme is filmed. Waiting to examine him there was Orthopaedic Registrar Rob, who explained: “When an elderly patient who’s fallen down the stairs comes in we’re particularly worried because they can have fallen head first, on their back, they could have tumbled, they could have caught their legs in a bannister.
“In addition, that patient’s bones are likely to be weaker. The sum of these things together makes for often very unusual and unpredictable patterns of trauma.”
Clearly in considerable pain from his shoulder injury, Neil was given a CT scan which revealed he had suffered a dislocation of his collar bone joint, together with broken skin and bleeding. Fortunately, it was his only serious injury.
His two grown-up daughters also rushed to the hospital to be at their father’s bedside. One of them, Jane, told the film crew how she had received the phone call at home to say her father had fallen down the stairs and was in hospital: “You think your parents are invincible and suddenly you realise they’re not quite as invincible as you thought,” said Jane.
Initially doctors were worried about operating on Neil’s shoulder because of the danger of giving him a general anaesthetic with his existing heart condition. After six days in hospital undergoing further tests, they decided his shoulder could be successfully treated without an operation, but they did go ahead with the surgery to fit the stents in his heart.
The conclusion of the programme saw a recovered Neil at home and active again.
“Do you worry about him going up and down the stairs?” the interviewer asked his wife, Jenny. “No, not now,” she replied, “because we quickly ordered a stairlift.”
This was accompanied by footage of Neil using his newly installed Acorn Stairlift (pictured right) to glide smoothly and safely down the staircase where he had previously fallen. Because Acorn Stairlifts can be fitted within days of an order, even next day if necessary, there was no delay in finding this ideal solution. We regularly fit a stairlift at short notice while people are in hospital, so that it is ready and waiting for them when they are able to come home.
Of course, prevention is always better than cure, and an Acorn Stairlift can be “preventative medicine”, by removing the possibility of a fall on the stairs. If you are at risk of falling, possibly through joint problems, dizziness caused by other health issues, or just general loss of strength, then an Acorn Stairlift is a very sensible precaution.
Having one installed in your home could spare you the pain and trauma suffered by Neil, and spare your loved ones the worry and stress his family went through. Why not call today to speak to one of our helpful stairlift advisors, or arrange a free no-obligation home visit. We won’t give you the hard sell and the detailed quote which our surveyor provides has no hidden extras and remains valid of a full year, giving you plenty of time to think things over.
You can view the programme (series 12 episode 12, broadcast Tuesday January 31st) through the Channel 4 catchup TV service, All 4, either through your Smart TV or set-top box, or by clicking here or visiting www.channel4.com/programmes/24-hours-in-ae to see it on your computer or other digital device.