April 2005 Table of Contents


COVER STORY: A Boost for Quality of Life

Combine information and a wheelchair-skills demonstration and what do you get? A dynamite workshop showing how assistive technology can make people active again!

Special Section: Wheelchair Cushions 101

How to chooseand what's out there to choose from!

Getting to Know Us...

How do people learn about an organization? One way is for its members to get out into their communities—or invite their neighbors in.

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Also in this issue:

Reasons & Remarks

Editor Cliff Crase comments on the big-screen debut of Murderball! Yep, the slam-bam quad-rugby sport has made the big time.

Access Through Architecture

PVA's Architecture Department answers a reader's questions—and provides some helpful ideas—about converting a small bedroom to an accessible office.

Diagnosis MS

Living with multiple sclerosis (MS) can make home life stressful. If hiring extra help could ease the situation, it is important to go through all the steps necessary to engage the right person and kind of support. This month, the National MS Society offers tips on hiring help at home.

Healing Options

Columnist S. Laurance Johnston, Ph.D., reports on cutting-edge surgeries around the world claiming functional restoration results that range from negligible to dramatic.

Living Well

This month's columnists, Catherine Warms, Ph.D., R.N., A.R.N.P., C.R.R.N., and Cynthia Salzman, M.H.A., give some practical advice on how to stay fit after SCI.

Mobility and More

What's the big deal about vibration anyway? Well, besides rattling your tooth fillings loose, columnist Dan Eilerman, P.T., notes that vibration can cause a wide range of detrimental effects on your body.

Money Talks

Few investment vehicles are of a longer-term nature than an Individual Retirement Account (IRA), and no other financial asset has historically offered a higher return over the longer term than common stocks. This month, columnist and financial advisor Dan Jones helps readers take a look at how IRAs might work for them.

People in the News

Craig Hawkins and his dog Woody are wowing the judges on the dog-show circuit. And oh, yeah—Hawkins has muscular dystrophy.

Travel Tips

From Athens, Greece, to Taos, N.M., to the Highlands of Scotland—columnist Carol Randall gives you the scoop on memorable (and accessible) vacations. There's also information on what you can do if you believe an airline has violated Air Carrier Access Act regulations.

Weight Matters

In part 4 of 12 in the series on weight management for people with spinal-cord impairments (SCI) the focus is on setting personal goals. Goals give you purpose and direction and keep you on track to better health, and columnist Yuying Chen, M.D., Ph.D., helps you understand what numbers are important and why.

Research Update

Women 18-55 years of age with and without MS are needed for a two-day study. Find out the details in this month's issue, which also recognizes the accomplishments of Dr. Mi-Ryoung Song, who received the 2005 Krauth Memorial Fellowship from Paralyzed Veterans of America.


The Nevada chapter of Paralyzed Veterans of America held its first pheasant hunt.

Fish Tales

Big winners hooked big fish—and big prizes—at the PVA Bass Tour's invitation-only 4th Grand National Championship (GNC), a BASS Sanctioned Event.

Sports and Recreation

Write-ups on the passing of fishing pioneer and SCI physician Dr. L. W. (Bill) Freeman, a delegation that brought donated wheelchairs and a sports camp to Ho Chi Minh City (Vietnam), and the Las Vegas (Nev.) 2005 Shooting, Hunting, Outdoor Trade Show and Conference. If you like wheelchair sports and recreation, you'll love our sister publication, SPORTS N SPOKES!


News reports from the Zia, Oregon, and Gulf Coast PVA chapters, including information about a fund-raising project to provide phone cards to all Oregon troops currently serving in the war against terrorism. There is also a report about Ms. Wheelchair America 2005's advocacy efforts for disability awareness.

Veteran Advisor

TRICARE for Life is a Medicare-wraparound available to eligible beneficiaries and their families and survivors. Columnist John Kahler describes just who's eligible for this valuable benefit and how to get it.

PVA President's Message

PVA President Randy L. Pleva Sr. talks about his experiences around and about, sharing the good work and great service provided by the organization he represents.

And Finally...

Guest columnist and disability- and senior-rights advocate Brewster Thackeray talks about a new low-budget, feature-length film that tells the story of a staffer and a resident in an assisted-living home—while maybe inspiring some thought-provoking questions among viewers.

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