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Courtney

Salt Lake City, UT

Occupation

Entrepreneur and Microbiologist

Technology

Myoelectric and body-powered prosthesis

Handspring Hero Since

2018

Success Story

In August of 2010, I was involved in a horse-related accident on the ranch I lived and worked at which resulted in the loss of my left hand. As a college freshman, scheduled to start my first day of class the following Monday, my world was turned upside down. For what felt like several hours, my family and I discussed options with the surgeon, possible reconstruction/reattachment, and the likelihood of successful outcomes, and I chose to amputate the remaining portion of my hand realizing this would be the best possible outcome, what a decision to make at 18. I still recall the irony of waking up after surgery and my very first meal brought to me was a steak. My mom, who was staying with me, offered to cut it for me, and I said "no, I'm gong to have to figure this out sooner or later."

Not knowing how things would look moving forward, I set my sights on the positives and decided that moving forward was the only way to go. I would not let the accident decide who I would be, or what I was capable of, and set off to live life to the fullest and defy the odds. 

 
In December of 2010, a few months after becoming an amputee, I started my journey with prosthetics, which was a love-hate relationship for some time. The team I was working with could not figure out a way to anchor my prosthetic securely and safely for many of my day-to-day activities on the ranch. I was frustrated and not able to use my body-powered prosthesis as much as I would have liked for safety reasons. The following May, I traveled to Ohio to be fitted with my first Touch Bionics Myoelectric prosthetic. This device changed my life in more ways than one. It opened a realm of possibilities and I suddenly was able to do things I hadn't been able to do in months,(like cut a steak - without sending a knife, or steak flying). I also developed CRPS in this time frame. Thus began the cycle of managing my CRPS and being able to wear my prosthesis. I also had a tendency to break my myoelectric, as we learned what exactly it was capable of with life on the ranch. These challenges and frustrations soured my outlook of prosthetics for a number of years. Eventually, in 2018, my providers informed me they would no longer be supporting upper limb patients, and I would need to find a new provider.

Enter Handspring Prosthetics. 

What Stands Out

I had found Handspring through finding one of my fellow heroes, Jodie, however, getting away from my restaurant during busy season to establish new care was going to be a struggle, and I was not looking forward to more failed expectations. Chris and Adam totally blew me away. They recognized the struggle I was having and met me in Montana to start an Excelerated Fitting process. They cast me and took the measurements they needed and we booked a week in Salt Lake to finish the process. I had no idea this was even possible, as creating my previous devices had taken months. 

What really was different and stands out is that the team at Handspring listened to my cares and concerns and worked with me to create not only the most comfortable socket I've ever worn, with special silicone padding in places to help alleviate nerve stimulation that triggered my CRPS, but also an incredibly attractive device that I love wearing. Previously, I had been forced into designs and options I did not care for and that caused me pain to wear. This was not the case with Handspring! The Excelerated fitting really blew my mind, I got to be involved with every step of the process, trouble-shooting, and design recommendations. The attention to detail is second to none, and I finally know what it is to be in love with my prostheses. The same great care has transitioned in working with Tim and Meagan, and because of the dedication of the team at Handspring, I've been able to accomplish several dreams and goals I'd not have been able to otherwise. 


From working with my doctors and insurance providers to prosthetic design and support, Handspring has proven to be an industry leader and sets the bar high. 

wearing no prosthesis to white water raft
wearing activity specific prosthesis to carry American flag horseback in parade
wearing myoelectric prosthesis horseback riding

Sage Advice

On this journey never allow yourself to be pressured into choices and speak up to have your concerns met. There's never a reason to be uncomfortable, and you will be less likely to utilize your devices and tools if they are causing you discomfort and pain.

Be open to new solutions and trying out new technologies and devices, but most importantly, find a good support team and surround yourself with others who inspire you.  


Becoming an amputee wasn't the end of my story, it just started a new chapter. It's not the end of yours and you are capable of so very much. 

Handspring Heroes

Maggie - Handspring Hero wearing activity specific prosthesis riding a bike
Jodie - Handspring Hero wearing myoelectric prosthesis riding a horse
Dan - Handspring Hero wearing prostheses to operate a race car
Chris - Handspring Hero and Olympic skier on a slope
Lee - Handspring Hero wearing prosthesis

Providing holistic, specialized care in upper & lower extremity prosthetic rehabilitation.

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