Brave Joe is back at work just two weeks after having leg amputated

Joe Michna, who has returned as manager at  Hartlepool Citizens' Advice  Bureau after losing his left leg to an infection.

Joe Michna, who has returned as manager at Hartlepool Citizens' Advice Bureau after losing his left leg to an infection.

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Brave Hartlepool Citizens’ Advice Bureau manager Joe Michna is back at work just two weeks after having a leg amputated.

Mr Michna is back at the helm of the organisation after his left leg was amputated following an infection.

The 62-year-old developed an ulcer on his left foot which developed an infection. The arteries in his left leg weren’t working and as a result no blood was flowing, resulting in the need for amputation.

“It’s great to be back as I still love the job,” he said.

“When you have had a major operation like the one that I have had, the key challenge that I have found is not so much the physical as the mental.

“It can be very easy to sink into depression and despondency and to begin to feel sorry for yourself.

“That’s not my way, and I accept that whilst I now have to cope with some significant physical restrictions and limitations, my life goes on and there is still much to enjoy and much to accomplish.”

Mr Michna underwent the operation at James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough on September 28 and was back at home on October 12. The very next day he was back in work.

Joe, who has been with the bureau for 27 years – with 25 of these years as bureau manager – is now in a wheelchair and coming to terms with some of the physical limitations and restrictions that being an amputee brings.

He is also undergoing weekly rehabilitation sessions at the hospital with a view to being fitted with a prosthetic limb.

“Of course there are very many people who are much worse off than me,” he added.

“Many people do not even have these basic life essentials. Lot’s of people also have much more severe physical problems than I do.”

Joe, who was in ward 6 of the James Cook Hospital, praised the staff there who looked after him during his two-week stay and the chairman of the Bureau Trustee Board Edwin Jeffries, for his support and understanding.

“I would like to pay particular thanks to Janet Noble, Julie Lloyd, Julie Pennick, Sam Fletcher, Kathy Bray, Ann Brown, Lisa Butler, Carol Dees and Ross Brooks ,” he said.