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Continued: Fear of falling on ice is physical and mental problem

  • Article by: BILL WARD , Star Tribune
  • Last update: January 25, 2014 - 9:52 PM

Rx: ‘a corrective experience’

That might help explain why an avid curler became “a real sissy.”

Michelle Christianson, 63, of St. Paul, had both hips replaced last summer and spent November and December steering clear of her favorite pastime and avoiding all nonessential trips outside.

“I was a mess,” Christianson said.

Many Minnesotans “gear up” and change how, where and when they walk.

Christianson said she “had to do what I used to call ‘walking like a goat.’ ” Fausone-Hartjen’s cane “has a device like an ice pick and I use that and just walk like a snail.” Schmidt said “walking like a duck is helping,” as are nonslip shoes.

The biggest key, Smallwood said, is to keep walking in winter — carefully.

And not to get complacent. Even when the weather starts to warm.

Last January, HCMC admitted 21 patients for injuries from falls. Two months later in March, that number doubled to 42.


Bill Ward • 612-673-7643


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