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Los Angeles, help?

Discussion in 'General ME/CFS Discussion' started by olliec, May 20, 2014.

  1. olliec

    olliec

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    I've travelled to the USA and arrive in LA tonight. I've been in the USA a few days already and am far sicker than usual, which has turned our plans upside down. I'm usually sick/mobile (within limits) but I'm now largely immobile. I used a wheelchair (first time) yesterday which was a lifesaver but we cannot find anywhere to rent one in the Hollywood highland area to use for a few days. I was going to drive in LA but I'm way too ill to do that safely now so that's another challenge, getting around in LA car-less.

    When this illness punches, it punches hard and straight in the face. But the lesson, again, is to not push my limits, and be grateful for what I do have.

    By any miracle can any LA locals help this sick Brit find a wheelchair and maybe some tips getting around the city without a car?
  2. maryb

    maryb iherb code TAK122

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    Good luck in LA - hope someone on here can provide some help or info to make your stay easier.
    WillowJ likes this.
  3. olliec

    olliec

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    Mary, you've already cheered me up with your weimaraner avatar. Is that your dog? I used to have a three legged weim.
  4. Sushi

    Sushi Moderator and Senior Member Albuquerque

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    @olliec

    Have you tried renting from a large pharmacy chain?

    Sushi
    WillowJ and maryb like this.
  5. olliec

    olliec

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    We've tried looking online but we can't find anywhere that rents them anywhere near where we're staying.
  6. maryb

    maryb iherb code TAK122

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    I love them, used to show and breed them as well as GWPs and GSPs before I got sick. Just got an oldie GSP now.
  7. maryb

    maryb iherb code TAK122

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    Have you asked at your hotel. I hired one when in Europe from the reception desk.
    Star-Anise likes this.
  8. SOC

    SOC Moderator and Senior Member

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    Look up "medical supply store los angeles wheelchair rental". I got a bunch of hits.
    maryb likes this.
  9. maryb

    maryb iherb code TAK122

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  10. minkeygirl

    minkeygirl Senior Member

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    I was going to say ask the hotel and also look for medical supply stores or wheelchair rental.

    As for getting around LA. See if you can find a Thomas brothers map book. If you can find a bookstore that will help or go to a gas station and ask for a local map.

    Stay off the freeways in the morning during rush hour and same thing at night if you can manage it.

    @Martial may be able to help. I'm south of LA So don't know the area well. Oh @NK17 I think lives up that way too.
  11. minkeygirl

    minkeygirl Senior Member

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    @maryb. Yellow pages may not help because La is so big. You need to narrow down the location more. Better to google wheelchair rental and the cross streets. Or call a local hospital for recommendations.
    NK17 likes this.
  12. NK17

    NK17 Senior Member

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    Hi @olliec I wish I could help you practically wise, but I am bed bound and therefore not driving or getting out much.

    I've been planning to get a wheelchair for a while and the best place to rent or buy in LA, from my preliminary research is this place:
    Pico Medical Rents and Sells
    6035 W Pico Blvd Los Angeles CA 90035
    (323) 936 4104
    Open from 10 a.m. - 6 p.m

    I hope you can sort out something with them, they have the best costumer's review.

    I wish I could land you a hand, I know how brutal ME can be and being in LA in the middle of a flare up with no car and no wheelchair it's pure hell.

    Can I ask you if you are here to see a specialist? Don't need to answer if you don't want to.
  13. olliec

    olliec

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    We've been googling a lot but still haven't found anywhere near where we're staying. I did see Pico but they are five miles from us.

    We're staying in an apartment rented via airbnb, so no wheelchairs. I wonder if we should try offering payment and a deposit to nearby hotels.

    I'm not in CA to see a specialist. I've tried the Breakspear Hospital in the UK, Dr Enlander and KDM but nothing I've tried with them has helped any more than things I figured out myself over the years. We're here for a vacation, but the deterioration has turned it upside down.

    It's distressing to be in a wheelchair the first time, but also an enormous relief. I find I am stared at a fair bit, but also feel invisible - I talk to people and they respond to my partner! I'm down here!
  14. minkeygirl

    minkeygirl Senior Member

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    The problem with LA is that it's huge and sprawling. Call a few pharmacies in the area. I"ve seen some that rent wheelchairs, ask for the pharmacist. If they can't help they may be able to refer you to some place.

    I would also call any hospitals in the area or even an office of an orthopedic surgeon. Just ask them a local place to rent. If you are in a complex, maybe call the manager and see if they can make suggestions.

    The area you are in is pretty Touristy so you may have to travel to get it. 5 miles is nothing in LA. Also see if someone will deliver for a fee. Call that place on Pico back maybe.

    By the way. There are enough freaks up there that you are probably the most normal thing people will see all day. Don't worry about it.
    maryb and NK17 like this.
  15. NK17

    NK17 Senior Member

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    How about a Walgreens pharmacy near where you are.

    I saw a "cheap" wheelchair for sale not long ago, don't know the exact price but maybe it can be a solution.

    I wish I already had a wheelchair and would gladly let you borrow it.

    I totally understand what you mean by saying that when you are on a wheelchair people stare at you and/or sort of ignore you. I had a taste of it a few months ago in a big store while my mom was pushing me, the worst part of the first time experience was that I was being ignored by family members ... (not my mom)

    If you are near a second hand store (Goodwill, Out of the Closet) you can try to find a wheelchair there.
    I found one once, it was a bit old but for a short stay and a few days it might work.
  16. SOC

    SOC Moderator and Senior Member

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    Five miles is not very far in a taxi. Can you get one of your able-bodied traveling companions to taxi over and pick up a folding wheelchair?
  17. SickOfSickness

    SickOfSickness Senior Member

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    NK17 had a good idea. I have seen older wheelchairs for sale at thrift stores. Also check Craigslist, the site where people sell used items. I see some for $40-95. http://losangeles.craigslist.org/search/sss?sort=rel&query=("wheel chair"|wheelchair) Near the top click on the tab that matches the area best. When you contact the seller, ask them if they can meet near you. They might ask for gas money but most sellers are willing to go out of their way a little.
    NK17 likes this.
  18. SickOfSickness

    SickOfSickness Senior Member

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    You might not even need a wheelchair if you are taking taxis to the attractions. You can visit tourist attractions that provide wheelchairs for free or inexpensively. Larger museums usually have them free. Outdoor places that are large, like a zoo or botanical garden, usually have scooters or wheelchairs.

    If it were me, I'd go on a bus tour. http://www.latourist.com/index.php?page=guided-bus-tours
    They pick up at hotels. I am sure you could take a taxi to a hotel and get on their shuttle. There are more companies offering tours than are listed on that page.

    Also consider renting a scooter. http://www.losangelesscooterrental.com/
    Last edited: May 20, 2014
    WillowJ and NK17 like this.
  19. WillowJ

    WillowJ Senior Member

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    Hi Ollie, sorry to hear you are so much worse. I hope you're able to work out the wheelchair situation and enjoy your vacation.

    There should be brochures and maps for public transportation in your hotel lobby and if not they should be able to give you this sort of information at the desk.

    I don’t know the situation for LA, but our public transportation is not always stellar in the US and it may be necessary to get a car, if none of the other suggestions work out and if you find the transportation doesn’t go where you want to go, has delays, or too much walking between transfers.

    If that becomes necessary there is at least one company which will send someone to pick you up to go rent a car (enterprise, I and my family don't work for them or anything and they may not be better or cheaper, I have just rented with them once and seen their ads)

    Big cities tend to be better, though, so you may find the public system meets your needs.
  20. olliec

    olliec

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    Unfortunately I've relapsed even further. I'm bedridden in LA now. This relapse has hit me much harder than usual and I've got very unpleasant flu like symptoms which are wrecking my sleep and creating a vicious circle of worsening symptoms. This is not how I imagined coming to LA. I expected to be sicker though. The flu like symptoms are odd - I've experienced them before, though rarely, but was never sure if they were the ME or just an infection layered on top.

    Hopefully I'll sleep better soon and be able to get out in a wheelchair to see the city.

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