The WAITING ROOM => GENERAL KNEE QUESTIONS and comments (good for new threads) => Topic started by: CarolineA on January 19, 2006, 07:36:05 PM

Title: Should I Drive?
Post by: CarolineA on January 19, 2006, 07:36:05 PM
Due to my ROM being stuck at 67 degrees on my right knee, I haven't been driving since I shattered my knee.  I've had a number of people encourage me to drive with my left leg.  I'm uncomfortable with this for a couple of reasons.  The first being liability.  If I get into an accident, I'm afraid I'll be blamed no matter what the circumstances.  The other is "muscle memory".  If I have to react very quickly, I'm afraid my right leg will try to react and make what ever the situation is worse.  A while back I was going down the stairs to Bart (Escalators were broken.)  The train was coming so I picked up the pace.  My left leg "forgot" it had to go after the right leg and if I wasn't holding the handrail, I would have tumbled down the stairs.  (Imporatant information for me, rushing is what got me into trouble to begin with!!) 

My husband, while not pushing me to drive, says I'm not being open minded to at least give it a go. 

What have others in a similar place done?

Title: Re: Should I Drive?
Post by: Naomi on January 20, 2006, 03:31:33 PM
Hi Caroline

Thanks for your post to my PM yesterday......I have not attempted driving yet, but thought I might give it a go when I get to 90 degrees. I would think it was dangerous to try otherwise. My husband is a patient man and is driving me around everywhere, but we work within a couple of miles, so he drops me there once a week. Otherwise I am stuck. I can't wait to drive, but I don't want to take any risks.....I think the decision should be yours though and not anyone elses, if something was to happen then at least you wouldn't blame anyone else!!!

Title: Re: Should I Drive?
Post by: kendra on January 20, 2006, 07:20:55 PM
it's risky to try driving with your left leg - most insurance carriers consider doing so to void their coverage.  and you're right about muscle memory - i think it sounds like a bad idea.  you might find that 65 degrees is enough movement to operate the pedals safely, especially if you drive a compact car where the seat is low to the ground.
Title: Re: Should I Drive?
Post by: CarolineA on January 20, 2006, 07:34:12 PM
I'm such a silly!! Here I work for the larged insurance broker in the world, and I never thought to ask someone here!!!  I just talked to someone in our Casualty department, and she said I'd be driving "while impaired".  While it wouldn't be illegal, it might increase the amount of my liability in the event of an accident and increase my rates.  She said the decision not to drive is a wise one.

Title: Re: Should I Drive?
Post by: sparkle999 on January 20, 2006, 07:35:03 PM
Ask your surgeon. In the Uk once your surgeon gives even verbal permission you are covered by insurance.
Title: Re: Should I Drive?
Post by: tippyclubb on January 20, 2006, 09:39:22 PM
Hi Carolyn, Driving my first time after the break was a major ordeal, and I was shaking putting my key into the ignition. Talk about nervous!  I thought I had forgot how.  It took lots of nerve to finally drive my car. Backed in and out the drive way 8 or 9 times before I finally got onto the road.  Maybe you should try what I did.  I didn't have the guts to just venture out onto a main road so I drove around the neighbood about half a hour before I felt comtafortable enough to get into the main stream of heavy, fast traffic.  I can't imagine having to drive with my left leg so many you should just try the residental area where theres little traffic, and slow speeds.  See how you do and if it goes well go out onto the main road.  Its funny how we take the simple things of life for granted, until we become sick and now the smallest of act seems like a major achievemnet.  I suppose were to learn a life lesson out of all this.  I haven't yet but a few months from now I probably will.  Good luck and let us know what happens.

Title: Re: Should I Drive?
Post by: misshilde on January 21, 2006, 01:49:37 AM
While I agree driving with left leg is not a good idea, I did..knew my surgery was coming up in Dec, so I started practising in the time I had my surgery it didn't matter which leg I used allthough I'm much more fluent on the brakepedal with my right..din't even think to ask my insurance, but now done is right leg is fine and I can drive normally..unless I go on a roadtrip..then I alternate when my righ leg gets too tired..if this is something that's going to last for a long in forever I would get a car with an extra gas pedal..kinda like a handicap friends mom lost the use of her right leg and the insurance company paid to get a left pedal installed..when she was using the car the right pedal was disabled,when her husdband was driving the left was disabled...don't know how..but it was kinda anway..until you feel comfortable don't drive.....