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Dad has late stage Alzheimer's and very bad arthritis. He is still able to get up sometimes but we find it almost impossible to do when he is ill - even when we are two. We are considering getting a electric lift hoist but it is pricey so would appreciate any comments if anyone has used it before. Also a comment on if one person would cope when using it would also be helpful. Thank you so much.
Nicky

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Hi, my husband has Dementia and arthritis, i have bought for him Easy Comfort LC-200 lift chair. Very easy to use and very helpful, soft no noise and cheap. I got
it from Overstock 4 month ago for $ 540,00. Free delivery. My husband love to sleep on this chair and gets up with out problem. Take a look Overstock.
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Thank you so much for your comments and hints everyone .... I have appreciated the input enormously and value the time you took in the detail that you have provided.
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I had a MAJOR ISSUE with the electric one, please read. Yes medicare pays for a hoyer lift if the doctor writes a prescription stating 4 reasons they need one (at least in my moms case, alz, 94 and full care, cannot use hands or legs)
I got the manual one and complained to the doctor about the pumping. He did a lot of paperwork stating the caregiver (me) needed the electric one to the insurance co. IT got approved. The pharmacy that brought it said I was the first one to get an electric one covered and I was thrilled UNTIL........ guess what...it didnt straddle Moms recliner! Omg, after all of that, I had to have them switch it out for the manual one again. Mom spends all afternoon in her recliner, she cannot walk, and I had to have the hoyer lift to put her in and out of it. So, my suggestion is what do you want to put your husband into? A bed is fine because you can roll it under it easilly. But to straddle a recliner, an extra wide wheelchair, or any other chair, do your measurements and ask for the hoyer lifts full spread measurement. The electric ones are made for hospitals and are narrower. I've been using it for about 6 years myself, its Moms magic carpet ride, no problems pumping it. The only thing I do have an issue with is putting her into a wheelchair because its lifts them curved and the wheelchair is small and straight backed. Good luck, hope this helps. Oh one more thing, always control it with the 2 straight handles and never push on the boom, it tells you on the hoyer, and this way it wont fall over, always travel with the legs as far open as you can also. Travel with him low and then raise at chair or bed.
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Be careful with lift chairs. Make sure they are not light enough to flip over should the patient (like my dad who has parkinsons and stiffens up or the dementia makes him forget to put legs down first and tries to climb out...flipping it forward. Wish i had realized this when purchasing. (My dad weighs 216 lbs) now i have to drill through my floor and use u clamps to hold it down so it doesn't flip) i am now in need of a hoyer. All theses answers have been helpful. Thanks for asking this qustion. My PT is recommending a stand up lift...time for calls to insurance to see if its covered. I was also told there are places that refurbish lifts and are less expensive but there are waiting lists.....good luck!
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I have the manual lift because my mother's insurance wouldn't pay for the electric one - I wish I would've purchased the electric one on my own but I now have strong arm muscles from repeatedly pumping the manual lift. :-) My mother has vascular dementia and is bedridden. If you haven't already done so, ask the physical therapist or occupational therapist which type of sling is recommended based on the patient's muscle strength/tone and on his ability to support his own head and neck; there are slings that provide head and neck support and there are those that don't so it's important to get the right type of sling to support the patient comfortably. Not all slings are compatible with all types of lifts. My mother's room has carpet and the lift can be a little difficult sometimes to move but her chair isn't too far from the bed so it's tolerable. My mother does get a little nervous when she's "up in the air" but is so happy after she's settled in her chair because she hates being bed all day long. If you can afford it, look on ebay and Craig's List for a good deal on a recliner with a massage and heat feature. My mother's chair is manufactured by Golden Technologies and it's a cloth-based Lazy-Boy chair-type. The head and massage these features are so comforting to my mother's back since she's can't exercise, can't move. Being bedridden causes a lot of pain in her back and legs. Once I hit the massage and heat, she falls asleep like a baby. Her chair is specifically designed for seniors. With the aging population, there so many "senior" chairs available.
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In my years in long-term care as well as rehab we use Hoyer Lifts all the time. If used properly they are safe and effective. I would agree that using it when not neede is not alwyas in the patients best interest. When your dad is able to stand and transfer is is better than the lift in that it still allows him to use muscles that arehelpful even when he is turning in bed etc. The ones we use are battery operated and are plugged in when not in use. There are safety measures to prevent a patient getting stuck in tje air. There are also Sabina Lifts that are used for a patient who can bear weight but no stand hoever; they are generally not covered under insurances where the hoyer may be w/ a dr,'s order. Transfers are always safest when using a gait belt so that should dad's legs crumble while transferring he won't fall on the floor and you wll save your back. They are available through any medical supply and many drugstores as well. When and if you get a Hoyer, have your family and yourself try it so you know how it feels. Best of luck.
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Every option is better than waiting for an injury to occur to either the person of caregiver. We talk to caregivers that physically lift the person every single time- how long before they hurt their back? Or people moving their heavy spouse via transfer board- often losing their balance and both crashing. Nicolene- best wishes and I think it is great that you are looking for advice/solutions before an accident occurs.
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Our sister has polio and is now bed ridden. We had her physician confirm she couldn't get out of bed on her own and have been using a hoyer lift for months. One sister can do it completely on her own - it can be done you just have to make sure the top is at the person's neck and the bottom has their rump right in the curved part. Then we put one set of straps on the longest end and the other on the shortest - this way they are out of bed in a sitting position and it is easier to get into another chair. We have roll it under her in a lying position and then get her into the sitting position to get her in or out of bed. We like the manual because you really have control over it. Since the physician did the recommendation, we had no out of pocket expense for this or the electric bed - we did pay for the high / low [to floor] option for the bed, with the hope that someday we can lower it so our sister can sit on the edge and touch the floor - not anywhere near that yet. The first time we put her in it, she was a little concerned that it might snap, but we had the gentlemen that brought it come and show her how he got into it and we lifted him with no problem.
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Before you go with an electric vs. manual, I do recommend that you ask/check about the noise (dB) level. Some electric models are louder than others and may agitate someone with dementia or even annoy you. But either can be a wonderful aide compared to no lift. Good luck and great job keeping him moving/caring for him.
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Good points, FBG - and an occupational therapist can help with all of those ideas, too.
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Can I offer another thought? Would proper assistive devices allow your father to "help himself" better and delay/avoid the use of a hoyer? A few hoyer negatives- moving it on thick carpet can be difficult/dangerous- many people change to hardwood floors. Maneuvering a sling on/off a person can be a real pain. A person being slinged is not fully using the muscles they have- resulting in lost muscle tone and further decline in strength. Hoyers are necessary when a person's abilities get to that point but I recommend other possible solutions be considered before having automatically going to a hoyer as the answer. There are lots of items on the market that can help depending on a person's abilities- safe/independent bed transfers can even be possible if no leg strength exists.
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We used a Hoyer manual lift for my wife when I still had her at home..I deliberately got the heavy duty one (lifts up to 450 lbs, at least twice her weight).
There would be no way to tip this one over, short of an earthquake. It worked very well. There are different types of slings that hold the patient safely.

Grace + Peace.
Bob
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I agree with the Occuaptional and Physical Therapy referral. Contact your Dad's primary MD and request a referral to an excellent Visiting Nurse Association for a Home Safety Evaluation from an Occuaptional and Physical therapist. If you are aware of an excellent VNA you can request that the doctors office fax the OT and PT script to the VNA of your choice. I suggest that you request that the therapists evaluate your dad and help to determine if a lift is recommended. If yes, please ask for specific names of lifts that will be the best match for your dad. There are excellent ones out there. The OT and PT cannot duplicate their services. The plan of care and services will be based on their clinical judgement and the goals of your father/family. The company that provides the lift usually provides initial training, and a therapist will supplement training to determine safety for all family members involved. Ask the therapist to recommend and advise regarding rental equipment, reputable used equipment resources (some companies sell barely used good quality with warranties), new equipment resources, and alternative funding options. This will help you review all of the options, before you make a final decision. I wish you and your family the best.
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My only caveat would be to do with ensuring that your father doesn't become agitated or frightened while he's being lifted and transferred - struggling could cause the machine to topple, which would be very dangerous of course.

However, that's not to say don't get one because they are very useful (you couldn't possibly hire one at a reasonable rent, could you? To try it out?). Get an occupational or physical therapist to train you to operate it safely; and before you use the lift itself try toget lots of practice with arranging the sling around your father and getting him out of it again - you develop a sort of choreographed routine, but it takes a little while to get the hang of it.

Professionals will always insist on two people being there to work it; but at home I found that just me, myself and my OCD about safety procedures worked fine, and better than with other people distracting me.

Best of luck, hope you find a system that suits you.
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I have a manual lift. I have been using it by myself to move my husband around for over a year. I have no problem using it by myself. An electric lift would be much easier, but they cost twice as much. A manual one works fine. Use both hands, elbows bent and close to your body, to pump the lift handle. If you use just one arm and pump using mainly your shoulder joint, you will injure your shoulder in a very short time. The first method saves your joints. Again, I've been doing it this way for over a year and have never hurt myself or my husband.
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My sister and I used one that was manual, in that we pumped the arm to lift and lower our Dad to his bed or chair. It worked great and was provided by his insurance. You must take care of your arm and not over-use it, so it is helpful to have someone to trade off with in the "Pumping" department, but we most often used it by ourselves; one person at a time. Good luck!!! It is so helpful and saves your back.
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My wife is in a care home, they use manual hydraulic hoists,but always have two carers present when hoisting,and use a special support strap.
I'm in the UK so not much help re equipment suppliers.
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