Sunday, 17 November 2013


We stress tested Amanda's arm. We had to figure out a way to brace it just under the shoulder, so that it wouldn't rip away from the rest of her body. We did it using an adjustable frame and some straps. Once the arm was braced, we began loading a barbell and seeing how much she could hold onto. We ran out of weight before she lost her grip. She told me she could hold on all day, so we tried a different test. We helped her lift her arm up and grip one of the chinning bars on the ceiling. Then we timed how long she could hang. We ended up having lunch while we watched her. In the end, she said her ribs were starting to hurt where she was dangling, so we helped her down.

Her condition is extraordinary. By most accounts, she's hideously deformed, but her distended arm is unbelievably powerful. She seems in high spirits, too, and was laughing and joking while we tested her. I really hope most of the patients here are more like Amanda and less like 83. It would make the research activities much easier to accept.

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