Woman makes husband prosthetic from items in the shed as pandemic delays fitting

A woman managed to fashion a prosthetic leg for her amputee husband from random things in her shed, after they couldn’t get to the hospital for a proper fitting.

The coronavirus pandemic delayed Steve Watson’s apointment to have his new prosthetic fitted, but his wife Atchari came to the rescue and put her creative hat on.

The couple, who live in County Durham, were told that they would have to wait months for an NHS prosthetic, due to the coronavirus crisis, so Atchari sprung into action to come up with an alternative.

Steve, who works as a teaching assistant, said his wife’s first attempt, made using a seaside bucket, fibreglass resin and a piece of wood, made him look like Long John Silver and kept sliding off.

But a second try with half a moon boot and wood from the shed was better, and it will allow him to get in the garden and walk around their house.

‘My wife is very practical. She can turn her hand to anything,’ says Steve. ‘At first when I saw her rummaging around in the shed I thought she was going to do the garden.

‘The next thing, she had one of our son’s seaside buckets and an old piece of wood. It was more akin to something Long John Silver would wear.

‘The next day when she came home from work, she got a moon boot from when I had a cast on my leg, cut it in half and used screws to attach it to a piece of wood and it’s absolutely brilliant.’

The father-of-three, who used to run a Thai restaurant and takeaway with his wife, suffered a badly broken leg when he fell 5ft in 2018.

Following a series of operations, he agreed to have the lower part of it amputated in January.

He was due to be assessed for a prosthetic limb last week but the hospital appointment was cancelled due to the Covid-19 outbreak.

‘I am not going to use this regularly, but it will be good for getting around the house for the next three to six months,’ Steve adds.

‘I desperately do not want to divert anybody in the NHS away from anything more important.

‘There are people far worse of than me at the minute.’

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