Center for Special Care is pleased to feature:
With a growing community of amputees (especially in
light of the Iraq war and the numbers of soldiers
returning with upper-extremity amputations); web
resources in this area are more important than
ever. Our website of the month is focused on
Upper Extremity Amputees (UEA) and we think it is a
resource you should know about.
was launched in May, 2005 as a collaborative effort to
give back to the UEA community and
provide a much needed resource. Originally
started as an ezine, it became clear early on that as
a web resources UpperEx.com had the ability to become
a portal for education and information and the site
has grown significantly since then.
homepage - a valuable resource for upper
Westover is a below-elbow amputee from
Minnesota. Always an active person, Eric was not
going to let an amputation prevent him from doing the
things he liked doing. So after his surgery in
2004 he began researching UEA support resources on the
web. Eric explained to us the dilemma he encountered
and what led to the creation of
started UpperEx.Com for two reasons. The first
reason was that there was no information out
there for people with an upper extremity limb
loss or difference. The second reason was to
give back to the community for all the help that
I received while I was going through the
amputation process, which lasted over two years.
site is easy to navigate. The
homepage lists a handy "What's New at UpperEx.com"
section followed by a general information section that
gives you an overview of the the site, information on how to subscribe to UpperEx.com
magazine and other useful items.
There is a menu in the left column of each page. First
listed is a link to the UpperEx.com
can go right to the current issue or access older issues
which are archived on the site. Each issue is full
of interesting and helpful articles on subjects like
sports, prosthetics, upcoming events, news, product
reviews, articles written by readers as well as
containing other valuable resources. One thing
that stands out immediately are the photos of upper extremity amputees
actively engaged in sports - not just adults but
children as well. And sports run the gamut from
tennis to trap shooting to mountain biking to hang gliding - every sport imaginable including competitive
sports with the Annual O&P Extremity Games.
You can access the issues for free on the UpperEx.com
site or you can sign up by email.
magazine has tapped into a large
community of people worldwide as Eric Westover noted to
mission with UpperEx.Com was to provide
information, inspiration, and education to all
upper extremity amputees, whether new or
experienced. The magazine started with 20
subscribers and now, two years later, there are
over 3000 subscribers in 30 different countries.
I never imagined that UpperEx would take off
like it did!
next section is called "Peer Support," and you
can find out about the UpperEx National Outreach
Coalition Peer Support Network. This is an
outreach program that connects upper extremity amputees,
their families, and friends with other amputees, and
family members for mentoring and support through email,
phone, and when possible, face-to-face meetings.
There is a "Support Group" section that is a comprehensive
listing of amputee support groups throughout the United
States and several international countries.
"Glove Swap," is a unique section where
individuals can have posted on the site images of gloves
that they cannot
use; so others who do need a right or left-hand glove can
request it - and it's a great idea that is free!
Another section is called "Tips & Tricks,"
and it features a number of informative videos on doing
daily tasks - such as
using a prosthesis to start a car with the key, opening a jar
and other tasks. There is also a picture guide
to tying a shoe and a section of tips that Physical
Therapists and Occupational Therapists can share with
each other with helpful information about performing
therapy with a UEA.
UpperEx.com also has a news page, and an events page
with listings for upcoming conventions, conferences and
sporting events. There is also an online store
where you can purchase
UpperEx.com gear and help support
the website, programs and services. If you like
you can also donate through PayPalģ.
We mentioned the
UpperEx National Outreach
Coalition Peer Support Network. This is a
not-for-profit foundation established by Eric
Westover. It's mission is to empower individuals
affected by upper extremity limb loss. The foundation has its
website and you can visit and learn more about their
mission, strategic plan, their board of directors and
activities. About this foundation Westover told us:
learned that there are many unique and complex
needs associated with being an upper extremity
amputee. Through all of my interactions I
realized that there was a need for an
organization that is dedicated exclusively to
individuals living with an upper extremity limb
loss or difference to provide programs,
services, and resources to those that are
affected by limb loss of an upper extremity.
Because of those interactions, The
National Outreach Coalition, Inc was founded in
2006 and now has itís 501(c)(3) status.
founders of some
of the websites we have presented, have discovered the
that the need the site filled on the web
initially; brought about
the awareness that more was required. UpperEx.com,
like others, have expanded to establish
not-for-profit organizations to provide greater
support, advocacy and bring together a community
magazine, a well-written, informative journal
created for the UEA community. You can
subscribe for free on the UpperEx.com
is another unique website and organization. Like
many of the sites we feature it has a grass-roots
origin. If you are a UEA, or have a family member
or friend who is or if you want to learn more about
living as a UEA we hope you will take time to visit
them. Northeast Center for Special Care is pleased to present
UpperEx.com as our website of the month
feature for August, 2007. They are
just a click
away, and don't forget to bookmark them so you can visit
Reference in this web site to any specific
organizations, commercial products, process, service,
manufacturer, or company does not constitute its
endorsement or recommendation by Northeast Center for