Fulton Tot Thriving with Power Wheels
TUPELO, Miss.—Jedadia Stanphill of Fulton recently became the youngest patient in north Mississippi and most likely statewide to get around using his own power wheelchair.
Jedadia, who got his first manual wheelchair at age 1, was only 2 years old when he got his new wheels. Born with the chromosomal defect Trisomy 15, Jedadiah suffers from arthrogryposis, which causes his joints to be curved and difficult to move, and muscular fibrosis, which causes his muscles to be weak. He has been coming for physical, occupational and speech therapy at North Mississippi Medical Center’s Outpatient Rehabilitation Center for two years.
Jedadia’s arms weren’t long or strong enough to propel his manual wheelchair, so he was dependent on someone else to get things he needed or move him from place to place. Physical therapist Regina Grimes, who is a certified assistive technology professional, suggested that a power wheelchair could introduce a whole new world to him. Before he turned 3, he was proving her right.
“He’s a very intelligent little boy. This power chair has given him a new means of exploration,” Grimes said. “He’s very efficient using the chair; it amazes me. He’s smiling, he’s happy and he really enjoys life.”
“Now he can do things for himself, play basketball and all kinds of things,” said his mother, Kirby Stanphill. His particular chair has advanced capabilities, including a seat elevator that allows him to raise up to reach items on countertops, tables and shelves—which has gotten him into a little trouble lately. It also reclines if Jedadia wants to read or watch videos.
“Jedadia’s new chair has really improved his speech-language development, social interaction and motor skills. Even his pediatrician has noticed the difference,” Grimes said. “Before he was really confined, because he always had to rely on someone else. The power wheelchair has improved his access to his environment.”
For more information about pediatric services offered through the NMMC Outpatient Rehabilitation Center, call 1-800-THE DESK (1-800-843-3375).