What does episodic mobility mean? Why the Queen is missing the state opening of parliament

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  • The Queen has been forced to miss major ceremony for the first time in almost 60 years as Buckingham Palace confirm her Majesty is suffering from “episodic mobility issues’ but what does episodic mobility mean?

    For the last seven months Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth has been struggling with her health. She was pictured using a walking stick during a rare outing with Princess Anne, before spending a night in hospital to undergo checks just weeks later. And under doctors orders she’s been forced to pull out of several official engagements, after being advised to “rest up”.

    With many face to face events held over zoom, her Majesty has been working from home and back in February after contracting Covid, the monarch confessed she had trouble moving when she carried out her first in-person audience since her Covid scare as she admitted, “Well, as you can see, I can’t move.” So we look at what the health condition means…

    What does episodic mobility mean?

    Episodic Mobility is a common health problem that affects elderly people as it is a condition that means that some of the time, they have trouble moving around. Michal​ Boyd, an associate professor at Auckland University and nurse practitioner who specialises in elderly care, said the scientific term for such problems is frailty. “Basically, as people age, they become frailer,” she told online publication Stuff. “You lose muscle mass, and as you lose it, you become weaker and you can’t mobilise.”

    “That means not being able to stand for a long period of time,” Mr Boyd said. “It can eventually progress to needing a wheelchair. Although I’m sure she’s not keen on not standing and giving a speech.”

    The Queen has been using a walking stick since October 2021 and this was the first time she publicly used the walking aid since 2003 when she needed to use one while recovering from knee surgery.

    The Queen confessed earlier this year that Covid had left her feeling “exhausted” and there were reports that she had a wheelchair-friendly lift installed at Balmoral as it was claimed she’s been using a wheelchair ‘much of the time’.

    The Queen’s health has been up and down in recent weeks, earlier this year in her first engagement after recovering from Covid she was videoed struggling to move from the spot she was stood.

    You can see a clip of the Queen struggling to move to greet people at Windsor Castle earlier this year below…

    Why is the Queen missing the State Opening of Parliament?

    The Queen is missing the State Opening of Parliament due to suffering from “episodic mobility problems”. Buckingham Palace released an official statement ahead of the Queen pulling out of the annual event.

    The statement read, “The Queen continues to experience episodic mobility problems, and in consultation with her doctors has reluctantly decided that she will not attend the state opening of parliament tomorrow.”

    A No 10 spokesperson added, “The prime minister fully respects the wishes of Her Majesty and is grateful to the Prince of Wales for agreeing to deliver the speech on her behalf.”

    You can watch the State Opening of Parliament on Parliament TV from 11am today (Tuesday 10th May).

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