What should I consider when choosing a power wheelchair?

Audrey K. Chun, MD
Geriatric Medicine
There are several issues you need to consider when choosing a power wheelchair.

Size is crucial for indoor use -- it needs to fit through your doorways and have a manageable turning circle. Battery power also is important, and most wheelchair batteries should last for 10 to 15 miles before they need to be recharged. However, what you use the chair for impacts on this. For example, if you're using the chair on a rising gradient or on rough ground, this will drain the battery faster than using it on level, smooth ground.

Your own size and weight factor in, too. Larger individuals won't get as much battery life when using a chair as smaller, lighter people do, so if you're heavy you may need a bulkier model with more battery life.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.