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Author Topic: Grocery shopping on crutches?  (Read 14918 times)

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Offline libertynm

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Grocery shopping on crutches?
« on: January 19, 2005, 04:24:57 AM »
Has anyone gone grocery shopping on crutches?  How do you manage?  Push the cart forward and then step to catch up with the crutches?  Any advice/comments would be appreciated.

Needless to say, I'm very frustrated that I'm almost 6 weeks post op and still on crutches.  I guess the infected incision has put me further back than the two week delay in physio. . .  Anyhoo. . . .
ACL allograft - 12/07/04

Offline knight_of_knee

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Re: Grocery shopping on crutches?
« Reply #1 on: January 19, 2005, 04:34:56 AM »
I drove in the electric cart or I had somebody push the cart while I hobbled along.

Some stores have a policy to offer assistance to disabled shoppers, whatever they need.  You might ask if they have that.

If I had to go alone, I think that I would probably take a backpack that I could put my stuff in...  a cart seems very risky.

good luck,
sid

Offline Nettan

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Re: Grocery shopping on crutches?
« Reply #2 on: January 19, 2005, 09:09:41 AM »
Hey !!

When I was on crutches I hang on the cart and layed my crutches in it. But this is only if you have good balance. Maybe you can bring someone with you or ask in the shop if they can help.

Hugs Nettan  ::)
Surgery 6 times left knee torn meniscus, RSDS,chondromalacia, nervdamage cause constant nervpain,chronic inflamm.
Spinaldamage wheeler 100%.
Right knee damaged aug-06, use brace surgery 4/9-07.LCL tear.

Offline Heather M.

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Re: Grocery shopping on crutches?
« Reply #3 on: January 19, 2005, 09:43:38 AM »
Get the electric cart (scooter, most stores have them in the back or locked near the front--see the manager for help). If you can't do that, and if you can weight-bear fully, you might be able to get by leaning on the cart and using one crutch...but I would just shop online or get a friend to do it in that situation. Or you can ask the customer help desk at the store if someone can push a cart for you. I just wouldn't want to be on my feet that long if I were still hurting bad enough to be on crutches.

And keep in mind that grocery stores are very dangerous for those on crutches. Things spill, the floors are slick anyway, and something as innocuous as a grape can mean a major spill for you. This is to say nothng of the other shoppers! I had someone in a long line continually pushing her cart into the back of my leg as I stood in line on one crutch. The front of the lower rack under the cart kept pushing and digging into my achilles tendon. It was 6pm on a weeknight and everyone was impatient. I ignored her for a few minutes, but finally turned and said "You know, this crutch isn't just for looks." She said "Huh?" like she had no idea what I was talking about, but she did finally back off a bit. A moment later, another checkstand opened, and the cashier motioned for me (as the farthest along in the line without having actually unpacked my groceries on the belt yet) to come over. The lady started to back up her cart to move over to the line, and the cashier came around to stop her, saying something like "I'll take her (meaning me) first and you will be next." The lady got all huffy and then PUSHED her cart back into the line we had both been in...meaning I had to crab walk sideways by her because there wasn't enough room for me to get out on my one crutch if I faced forward. I was so mad I could have spit nails, and she gave me a dirty look like I was inconveniencing her or something. I pushed past her muttering "you know, I don't use this crutch for fun, it actually serves a purpose."

So my point is that you on crutches in a grocery store is actually not the best idea ever...especially at certain times of the day. You've invested a lot in your recovery...don't push things too hard or put yourself in the position of being at the mercy of the kindness of strangers...especially in the burbs at 6pm on a weeknight!!

Heather
« Last Edit: January 19, 2005, 09:44:21 AM by hmaxwell »
Scope #1: LR, part. menisectomy w/cyst, chondroplasty
#2-#5: Lysis of adhesions/scar tissue, AIR, patellar tendon debridement, infections, MUA, insufflation
#6: IT band release / Z-Plasty, synovectomy, LOA/AIR, chondroplasty
2006 Arthrofibrosis, patella baja
http://www.flickr.com/photos/hmaxwell

Offline heather k from wales

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Re: Grocery shopping on crutches?
« Reply #4 on: January 19, 2005, 11:04:05 AM »
I manage by putting one of the crutches in the trolley/cart and lean on the trolley with my good side arm.  I use the crutch on the bad side.  I manage quite well and do my parents shopping as well.  But I tend to go several times a week, as a full trolley is just too much to push and turn corners.  I always go in the week at a quiet time to avoid the mad rush of wacky shoppers!!
And I always pay for it afterwards in pain! :-[

Good luck and let us know how you get on.

Heather ;)
91 Mangled Right knee on trials motorbike
94 Meniscus Repair
95 ACL/LCLrec,notchplasty,bone graft
01 90% Menisectomy
02 Scope
03 ACLrec,LAD
OA,osteophytes
04 Ch'plasty, ACLdeb,Suprapatella mbr ex, haematoma
04 Scope
March 06 Scaphoid op/bone graft
Nov 07 Thyroid Cancer ops x 2, radiation

Offline cgski

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Re: Grocery shopping on crutches?
« Reply #5 on: January 19, 2005, 12:16:35 PM »
When I was on crutches my husband was working away from home in Germany, I was at work during the day, so I had to figure how to do the family shop when the store was busy. Solution was either to take one of the kids to push the trolley, or go up to customer services and ask for help. They always seemed really pleased to do this (makes a change from price checking or dealing with the grumpy trouts queuing up to complain). I wasn't on crutches for long enough to get profficient at any of the solutions proposed above, and was terrified of falling and doing more damage. Also, how do you cope when you need to reach up high, or take a 5kg box of washing powder into the trolley...?
The problem comes when you get home, unloading...
Good luck!

Offline favouritesearcher

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Re: Grocery shopping on crutches?
« Reply #6 on: January 20, 2005, 12:26:36 AM »
You could try doing grocery shopping on the internet. I found it's very reliable (you can specify a two hour delivery time) and the extra cost is only about 10% or less. Then just pick up a few things such as milk at a quiet time.

Other options: diet meals (saves on cooking too) or a community helper, or Meals on Wheels.

It's not just getting round the supermarket, it's also getting it indoors and packing it away, etc. Otherwise there's no easy solution. I tried once with two crutches, push the trolley a little bit, take a step, repeat but the strain on the leg wasn't worth it.

John
« Last Edit: January 20, 2005, 08:51:12 AM by favouritesearcher »
Mar 04 - Tibial spine avulsion fracture (skiing).Open surgery to fix, 1 screw. Max passive ROM 20-75, active ROM 30-45
Aug 04 - Diag. severe arthro. Scar tissue clean up (LOA, removal of scar tissue).
Feb 05 - Discharged from surgeon's care. ROM 3-125.
Apr 05 - Discharged from physio. Same ROM

Offline Jaci

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Re: Grocery shopping on crutches?
« Reply #7 on: January 20, 2005, 04:07:33 AM »
I've been shopping while on crutches for many months now. I can't push a cart because my knee won't tolerate that much weight. My knee really doesn't like to be bent for more than a few minutes so the electric cart is not an option.

I just carry a large fabric tote bag over my shoulder and load it up. I generally end up shopping every few days, which is fine at the present. For large or bulky items I make a list (be sure it's really specific) and have customer assistance get the items for me.

I used the internet service several times when I was on the CPM for 18+ hours a day for 6 weeks. I just couldn't bring myself to use my 'free time' to go out to the store. I was concerned that the apples would be bruised and the lettuce crushed, but was pleasantly surprised with how carefully everything was packed. The delivery guy was great, he'd keep the items that required refrigeration separate. That way I could shove them in the fridge and deal with the rest later.

I also try to shop during the slow times. I even found one of my favorite grocers near a neighboring retirement community. The seniors are much more patient about someone who is slow. ;)

Good luck to you.

Jaci

« Last Edit: January 20, 2005, 04:10:30 AM by JMStan »
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Offline libertynm

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Re: Grocery shopping on crutches?
« Reply #8 on: January 27, 2005, 05:01:04 AM »
Hi guys,

Ventured out to the grocery store the other night with my boyfriend.  At 11pm, it was definitely off peak!  (which was nice).  It was also nice to be in a grocery store again!  Just to be doing something normal!!  :)  I tried it with one crutch, but probably ought to have gone in with two as I was really leaning on that one crutch after the first 20 minutes or so.  It's surprising how much less than an hour of shopping can tire you out.

I'm looking forward to picking up a few items on my own later this week.

Thanks for all of the tips!!!  I really hadn't thought about some of the possible complications that you guys mentioned!



« Last Edit: September 19, 2007, 03:26:35 AM by libertynm »
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Offline ryiann

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Re: Grocery shopping on crutches?
« Reply #9 on: January 30, 2005, 11:27:22 PM »
I hated the one, one, time I went grocery shopping on crutches.  It was horrible.  I had to do just that, push the cart forward and walk to catch up.  Plus you feel like your in everyones way.  Never again.  I tried one crutch and holding onto the cart, even worse.  I had someone go with me the next time, Husband  ;D, but I don't know if you have this option.  There is nothing worse than trying to go shopping right after surgery and you have a knee that is stuck straight out in front of you.  I sympathize, just take it easy, it will all work out.  Luckily I was only on them for two weeks before I was told to stop using them.  I hope your not on them too much longer. 

Jenn

Offline Mitidai

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Re: Grocery shopping on crutches?
« Reply #10 on: January 31, 2005, 09:06:22 PM »
I use a motorized cart.  The problem is that people can be so rude.  They will not get out of your way.  Then you end up trying to back out of the aisle.  I wish people would be more considerate and realize it could very easily be themselves in this situation someday.

JAN
9-2002 medial menisectomy left knee
11-2003 lateral menisectomy and microfracture left knee
11-2003 fractured cartilage left knee
lateral menisectomy right knee 1-2005
microfracture right knee 1-2005
tkr left knee 1-2006
arthroscopy and lateral femoral chondroplasty 9-2006

Offline littlemonster

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Re: Grocery shopping on crutches?
« Reply #11 on: February 16, 2005, 02:45:55 PM »
safeway.com, baby!  Nothing like having your groceries delivered.  Another thing I've done is go in there with a backpack and just put stuff in there and then unload it when I get to the counter.    I've found also that there are many many people who are willing to take me to the store and do the heavy lifting for me.  Or I've also had people pick stuff up for me when they were there.

August 2002 - ACL Replacement, patellar autograft (volleyball injury)
January 2005 - ACL Replacement, patellar autograft and meniscus repair (racquetball injury)

Offline ranger

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Re: Grocery shopping on crutches?
« Reply #12 on: February 16, 2005, 03:26:59 PM »
I'd add my vote to the online shopping suggestions. I only tried going to the store once alone on crutches, mostly because I was going insane with boredom. It isn't just trying to handle a cart, slippery floors and lifting. It's people crashing around you and into you, small children that materialise at your feet or knock your crutches, distance, things placed out of reach- a hundred minor problems that I never anticipated until I got into the store and tried to do it. I ended up abandoning my shopping and leaving, since I was getting seriously afraid I'd fall. If someone else can come with you, and you can shop from a chair, then it's likely to be a lot less stressful and uncomfortable, not to mention lower risk.
All the online shopping I've done has been a great service, quick and accurate and the cost of it is a small price to pay for staying safe and comfortable until you're steadier on your feet.

best wishes

Ranger
Sept 04 fall
Dec 04 arthroscopy, medial femoral coblation, ACL reportedly 'stretched';
Jan 05 cortisone;
Feb 05 new OS, MRI, ACL 75% tear, articular cartilige damage, MCL partial tear, femoral bone bruise, knee severely unstable.
MacIntosh ACL repair 8/4/05

Offline ProfLiebstrom

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Re: Grocery shopping on crutches?
« Reply #13 on: February 16, 2005, 04:39:00 PM »
Get the electric cart (scooter, most stores have them in the back or locked near the front--see the manager for help). If you can't do that, and if you can weight-bear fully, you might be able to get by leaning on the cart and using one crutch...but I would just shop online or get a friend to do it in that situation. Or you can ask the customer help desk at the store if someone can push a cart for you. I just wouldn't want to be on my feet that long if I were still hurting bad enough to be on crutches.

And keep in mind that grocery stores are very dangerous for those on crutches. Things spill, the floors are slick anyway, and something as innocuous as a grape can mean a major spill for you. This is to say nothng of the other shoppers! I had someone in a long line continually pushing her cart into the back of my leg as I stood in line on one crutch. The front of the lower rack under the cart kept pushing and digging into my achilles tendon. It was 6pm on a weeknight and everyone was impatient. I ignored her for a few minutes, but finally turned and said "You know, this crutch isn't just for looks." She said "Huh?" like she had no idea what I was talking about, but she did finally back off a bit. A moment later, another checkstand opened, and the cashier motioned for me (as the farthest along in the line without having actually unpacked my groceries on the belt yet) to come over. The lady started to back up her cart to move over to the line, and the cashier came around to stop her, saying something like "I'll take her (meaning me) first and you will be next." The lady got all huffy and then PUSHED her cart back into the line we had both been in...meaning I had to crab walk sideways by her because there wasn't enough room for me to get out on my one crutch if I faced forward. I was so mad I could have spit nails, and she gave me a dirty look like I was inconveniencing her or something. I pushed past her muttering "you know, I don't use this crutch for fun, it actually serves a purpose."

So my point is that you on crutches in a grocery store is actually not the best idea ever...especially at certain times of the day. You've invested a lot in your recovery...don't push things too hard or put yourself in the position of being at the mercy of the kindness of strangers...especially in the burbs at 6pm on a weeknight!!

Heather

You are better than me. I would have turned around and shouted at them :p

Offline Ronxski

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Re: Grocery shopping on crutches?
« Reply #14 on: February 16, 2005, 11:33:17 PM »
Mr. Squid and Heather M had great suggestions. Always best to have someone with while you hobble along on the crutches. Try shopping on crutches when you have to cross icy and snowy parking lots and then getting the snow out of the crutch bottoms when you are inside the store and following wet slushy foot prints for about 100 ft till their boots dry off. If any of you are old enough to remember Paul Simon from Simon and Garfunkel. One of his songs kept going through my mind. Slip Sliding Away.

One line in the song... "You know the nearer your destination the more you keep sliding away..." What one thinks about in perilous moments!  :)

I tried the one crutch and push cart thing. That was terribly hard when you couldn't put much weight on the leg. I'm glad I can now walk some and shop on my own. Crutchless in Minnesota
partial meniscus removal, posterior horn of medial meniscus tear,horizontal cleavage type. Dec. O4
Age 56
back to cross country skiing and biking.