Instructions for using Crutches
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This brochure is designed to help you use crutches properly and safely. Please continue to use them until further notice from Dr. Talkington.
Special Points to Remember
Good crutch tips are important for good suction. Avoid worn out crutch tips, which can cause
you to slip or fall.
Padding is available for the crutch tops and hand piece if your chest wall or hands become sore.
You can purchase special crutch pads from drugstores or tape an old towel or foam around the
crutch for padding.
It is essential that crutches are the right length to ensure safety as well as efficiency. The top of
the crutches should be two to three inches below the armpit. This is the approximate width of
The handgrip should be adjusted so that your elbow is slightly bent when you walk. The proper
height of the handgrip is at the level of the wrist crease when the arms are hanging at the side of
Note: Make sure that the crutches are adjusted to the right size after padding them, and when
wearing the shoes you will be walking in.
Use of Crutches
The crutches should be held close to your body. Use your arms to hold them close to your chest.
Place all your weight on your hands when walking. DO NOT lean on the bar; this can cause
pressure on a nerve root and also cut off circulation.
Crutches should be placed just to the front and slightly out to the side for walking.
Take small steps and take your time.
Use for Non-Weight Bearing
The affected leg does not touch the floor. Swing both crutches forward. Rest the body weight
on crutches and swing leg forward.
Use for Protected Weight Bearing
The crutches and affected leg always move forward together.
Use on Stairs
For optimum safety the use of a railing or banister and one crutch is recommended.
Face the stairs and place the crutches close to the first step.
• Remember that the “good go up.” Take a small step up with
your good leg. Both crutches and the affected leg remain on the
Then raise crutches and affected leg to the first step. Repeat one step at a time.
• Face the stairs with your good leg close to the edge of the top step.
• Repeat one step at a time
• Remember that the “bad go down.” Lower
both crutches and your affected leg down onto
the first step, while keeping all your weight on
the good leg.