DIY SOS Case Study – Amanda Worne

Name: Amanda Worne
Client challenges: Reduced mobility due to spinal injury
Solution: Double combination bed with dual profiling and variable height

Theraposture donates adjustable bed to inspirational Amanda as part of DIY SOS life-changing accessible home conversion

Amanda Worne, aged 46 from Yapton near Arundel, West Sussex, is a remarkable lady who continues to rebuild her life after experiencing a life changing injury.

Following severe damage to her lower spine caused by a bicycle crash at 50 mph, Amanda lives with permanent disability and the need for a wheelchair.

Following a nomination by a close friend, her family have received a complete home transformation thanks to the flagship TV home makeover programme DIY SOS.

As part of this ‘Big Build’ to remodel Amanda’s house for wheelchair accessibility, Theraposture have donated a specialist adjustable double combination bed so Amanda can enjoy greater independence, comfort and support.

Amanda has four children aged between 13 and 19 and has always led a busy life, “at a million miles per hour” as she describes it.

My bed has made a massive difference to my life. . . . this Theraposture bed is an absolutely vital part of my life transition

In between raising her children Amanda has been a keen athlete regularly training for endurance events such as the London Marathon and ‘Iron Man’ competitions.

As a highly competent runner and cyclist, Amanda had reached a new peak in fitness and strength when she experienced a brake failure on her bicycle during a training session. She lost control of her bike on a remote downhill section of road, collided with a metal post and landing in a deep bramble-filled ditch.

Amanda adjusts the angle of her electrically operated bed for maximum personalised comfort

Amanda and Theraposture’s Tom on ‘Reveal Day’

Amanda’s life-threatening injuries

Amanda suffered life-threatening injuries including a punctured lung and eleven fractures, five of which were to her spine.

As Amanda was not visible to passing motorists it was only by sheer luck a cyclist climbing the hill heard her faint cries and immediately called 999.

Major back operations

Following this horrific ordeal, Amanda spent 5½ months in Stoke Mandeville hospital. She underwent two major back operations which included vertebrate removal, fusion and the insertion of posterior and anterior plates to stabilise her spine.

In addition to coming to terms with the inability to walk Amanda had to fight off pneumonia during her hospital treatment.

Rebuilding her strength

With extensive physiotherapy, Amanda began to rebuild her strength and discharged herself early so she could return home. However, her house was simply not suitable for her needs with major wheelchair access issues resulting in Amanda “not being able to be a mum”.

This is why DIY SOS and Theraposture agreed to help.

Amanda adjusts the angle of her electrically operated bed for maximum personalised comfort

Amanda thanks Tom from Theraposture during the DIY SOS Reveal Day

Find out more about our upholstered combination beds

Upholstered double combination adjustable bed from Theraposture:

man and woman in white adjustable bed
  • Available in any combination of function, fabric, size and style, this bed allows partners to continue sharing a bed even if mobility needs vary.
  • It includes two separate quality mattresses and mechanisms that are connected together forming a double bed. This means you can enjoy independent adjustment of your sleeping position without disturbing your partner.
  • Profiling, variable height or profiling & variable height functionality is available or either or both sides of the bed.
  • Conform to BSEN606012-52. This means all variable height beds from Theraposture can be raised to a safe working height for carers so excessive bending and potential musculoskeletal injuries can be avoided.
  • Market-leading durability and strength. Theraposture domestic looking adjustable beds have free-standing metal mechanisms that are directly in contact with the floor. This is unlike the majority of alternatives from other suppliers that have mechanisms supported by shelves within the enclosure.

When Theraposture were approached by the DIY SOS team, they immediately offered support

This trusted supplier is commonly first choice for healthcare professionals specifying tailor-made adjustable beds, chairs and care cots – the ethical, considered choice for over 35 years.

Following consultations with Amanda’s Occupational Therapist, Theraposture agreed to handcraft a double combination bed with profiling and variable height functionality on each side.

The upholstery would be finished in a unique vibrant material to match the DIY SOS designer’s scheme and Theraposture specialist technicians would install the bed for free.

Tom from Theraposture (second from right) with the DIY SOS stars

Watch Amanda’s case study video

Watch the big day

Amanda’s adjustable bed features

Individual mattresses & bed mechanisms

Amanda’s double bed comprises of two individual mattresses and mechanisms that are enclosed in one surround. The profiling functionality allows the angle of the head and foot ends to be adjusted and the variable height means the complete sleeping platform can be raised or lowered.

Powered by quality German engineering, this bed provides smooth, controlled and quiet independent adjustment of each side of the bed. This means Amanda and her husband can adjust their own position without disturbing each other.

Reducing pressure and improved circulation

The profiling gives postural support to Amanda when sitting up and she can raise her legs to reduce pressure and improve circulation.

Easier wheelchair access

By raising and lowering the bed Amanda is able to easily and independently transfer into her wheelchair which was a significant struggle with her old standard bed.

Reveal Day!

During the DIY SOS ‘Reveal Day’ Amanda and her family were overwhelmed with their fully converted accessible house and Theraposture adjustable bed. Amanda had requested a bed to the producers as she was struggling to get in and out of her standard bed however never expected her wish to come true. She explains:

“I really didn’t expect the bed. I had discussed what equipment would help me with my OT and an adjustable bed was on my ‘Christmas list’, but I never thought anyone would donate such a quality product. I had nasty sores on my arms from the friction of trying to sit up in bed. The profiling action of my new bed has solved the problem. My bed has the engineered quality of a specialist hospital bed but is beautiful to look at.”

Amanda comments:

“My bed has made a massive difference to my life. I can now sit up without having to struggle. It also means I can use the bed to elevate my feet. When you have a spinal injury, your circulation is quite harboured in a lot of ways so this elevation helps any fluid disperse. This bed is an absolutely vital part of my life transition.”

“There is another link with Theraposture as I now have a through floor lift donated to me by Eric Rivers’ family. The late Eric Rivers was another recipient of a DIY SOS conversion and Theraposture bed which helped him during his fight against Motor Neurone Disease.”

Amanda continues:

“It’s really lovely to know that if I do struggle to get up in the morning, I have the backup of the bed to give me the support I need. I don’t use the head end incline all the time as I what to retain tone in my stomach. However I have security in old age when I am going to struggle a lot more, I guess my bed is future proofed. It’s really comfortable and the mattress is brilliant for my back, much more supportive than my old airflow system which I couldn’t push against when trying to sit up. I also have the option of raising and lowering the bed so it fits to the height of my wheelchair.”

“I think mornings are a struggle anyway in life, in general. Then add a disability and a bed that doesn’t work, equals a disaster. I used to have two voices in my head – one saying stay in bed and the other encouraging me to tackle the day. Now I don’t have any of those contradictory thoughts, I wake up and it’s totally different, like a massive cloud has been lifted that was weighing me down. Since having the bed I have being so much more aware of how much easier life is with it. I’m really grateful.”

Amanda adds:

“I now don’t need a transfer board to get into bed from my wheelchair. With my old bed it was something that I had to us as it was too tall. I would regularly forget my board and leave it downstairs which was a real pain. Not needing a transfer board is important from a physiological point of view as I have eliminated one piece of kit.

My bed transfers are also so much quicker. When you become disabled you have to learn to be patient, everything takes a lot longer. So any small thing can make a massive difference, my bed having really low access is one of them.”

The future

Amanda continues to rebuild her life and her positivity is an inspiration to all. Since her injury she has skydived, scuba dived, competed in the Interspinal Games and still attends the gym regularly. She has written a book recording her experiences and is working as a motivational speaker. Amanda plans to tackle the highest mountain in Africa, Kilimanjaro, in a wheelchair for charity during 2018.

Amanda concludes:

“This Theraposture bed ‘is me’, it has my name all over it, it’s a Mandy bed! When I had my old bed I would lie awake at night, unable to get comfortable. I would sometimes resort to getting out of bed and sitting in my shower chair just so I could change my position. Now I can move myself at the touch of a button.”

“Once sleep breaks down it can affect everything in your life. I now feel refreshed and have a lot more energy during the day. My Theraposture bed is really beautiful and just the best bed. I would recommend it to anyone with a disability, it is absolutely first-class.”

Amanda relaxes in bed with her dog Max

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