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UK Adult with Bilateral PFFD also no left arm from the elbow

My name is David Bailey and I was born on June 14th 1976.
I was a premature baby weighing just 2 lbs 5 oz's!
It was obvious from birth that I had congenital deformities bilaterally, 3 toes on my right foot, and 4 on my left foot, and my right leg slightly shorter than left. I was also born with only 1/2 my left arm.
I was put up for adoption from birth, as my biological mother was only 16, and had kept the pregnancy secret from her parents and I think my biological father, and with my disabilities and no parental support from either set of grandparents, she thought that would be best for me.
I was in hospital for the first 8 moths until foster parents had been found. I was fostered then later adopted by the same family.

I eventually learned to walk, obviously later than most kids. In time I was fitted with prosthetic legs on both sides, more I think to bring me up to normal height than to aid walking, as I could walk and run around on my own legs. I was also later fitted with a prosthetic arm.

By the age of 7 I started suffering from knee pains on my right side, which as I was told was due to my femur and hip deformity. I think I'm Aitken's C or D, not 100% sure. In Oct. 1983 I had an operation to put a pin into femur and hip to rectify this.

After this operation my knee on the right side gradually stiffened up at an angle not allowing me to straighten it, or walk properly on my own two legs. Through discussions with my prosthetic limb consultant, orthopaedic consultant, parents and importantly me, it was decided to amputate my right leg above the knee. We decided on this for various reasons, my leg was next to useless and I could hardly even stand on it, I’d also had to have a prosthetic leg modified with a hole cut out the back to accommodate the odd angle of my leg, it not being straight. This wasn't practical and my walking with it was worse.
I had the amputation in Dec. 1985, when I was 9 1/2 years old.
After everything was healed I got fitted for a new type of leg, kept on by wearing a leather belt attached to the top of my stump socket. My stump is extremely short.

I wore my prosthetic legs until I was approximately 12 years old. I had never been the best at walking on my prosthetic legs, and as I grew larger this got more and more difficult, to a stage where I was wearing them but using a wheelchair nearly all the time. So I decided, what was the point, and stopped wearing them altogether and become a full-time wheelchair user. Due to this I also stopped wearing the electric prosthetic arm I used, so I could use an arm socket with a shaped end to propel my wheelchair, a full length prosthetic arm is of no practical use to push a wheelchair.

The amputation was the last surgery I had in relation to my condition, though I did suffer with some pain in my left knee, from the left hip, but that never required surgery.
I think since I stopped walking with prosthetic legs my left hip isn't getting the strain placed on it that it used to receive and hasn’t got worse.
Hopefully I won't need any surgery in the future.

There has been very little my condition has prevented me from doing. There is always someway of adapting something to suite.
My parents have always supported me in anything I wanted to do, and most importantly I believe, did not wrap me in cotton wool and be over protective, they let me get on with it.

I never had any problem at school or college because my friends accepted me for me. My secondary school had lots of stairs, no lifts back when I attended, I either got out and hopped up the steps, or I was pulled up in my wheelchair, it wasn’t an issue, you have to just get on with it.

I’ve enjoyed all types of sport over the years, I used to swim for the North of England, getting many medals, I regularly play pool in a local pub league and for the last 15 years have played wheelchair basketball, which I really enjoy.

I’ve been driving since I was 16, on my fourth car now. I love cars. One day I hope to have an Aston Martin, we can all dream!

I’m engaged to the lovely Alex, hopefully married in the next few years and start a family of our own. I love kids, I think it’s because I’m just a big one myself!