Scientists have developed a robotic interface which could help to restore fine hand movements in paraplegics.
By combining an electrode cap with an exoskeleton worn over the fingers, the device translates brain signals to hand movements.
The approach could provide paraplegic patients with the fine motor control needed to carry out everyday tasks such as eating, drinking and signing documents.
Newswise — Balance is an essential component of daily life, something many of us take for granted. But not everyone can. In the United States alone, there are about 300,000 people living with spinal cord injury (SCI) and some 12,000 new SCI cases each year, most of them young adults, 80% of them men. The recovery of motor functions—walking, standing, and balance—after a SCI is slow and limited, can be highly variable, and can take months or even years. The cost of care for SCI patients is enormous—annually over $3 billion. Studies have shown, however, that activity-based interventions offer a promising approach, and Sunil Agrawal, professor of mechanical engineering and of rehabilitation and regenerative medicine at Columbia Engineering, is at the forefront of research efforts to improve recovery through the development of novel robotic devices and interfaces that help patients retrain their movements.
After twelve months, eight patients and 2,052 sessions spread over 1,958 hours, Duke University is publishing some promising results from a study seeking to demonstrate the ability for brain-machine interfaces to help restore mobility in humans.
The study, which appeared this week in Scientific Reports, looked at a group of paraplegic patients suffering from a chronic spinal cord injury. The system utilized a brain-machine interface featuring an Oculus Rift headset that simulated the effect of having a neurological connection to their lower limbs. The system was also capable of moving a pair of robotic actuators to actually create movement.
ReWalk Robotics announced the first ruling by the Social Welfare Court of Speyer which declared the ReWalk exoskeleton system was medically necessary and should be covered by insurance for a patient with spinal cord injury. The ruling, delivered in late July, overturns the original denial of the claim by the payer, a statutory health insurance entity, according to a press release.
The claimant, Philip Hollinger, is a 44-year-old man who sustained a spinal cord injury in a car accident in 2006. The accident left him paralyzed with a T6 level injury.
Cumming School study first in Canada to examine whether using robotic device immediately following injuries promotes recovery
Researchers from the University of Calgary’s Cumming School of Medicine are the first in Canada to examine the benefits of using an exoskeleton robotic device to rehabilitate patients with spinal cord injuries (SCI) in the days and weeks following their injury.
A research team in Spain has developed the world’s first exoskeleton prototype to help disabled children learn how to walk and sustain mobility.
First robotic exoskeleton cleared for use with stroke and spinal cord injury levels to C7
RICHMOND, Calif., April 04, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Ekso Bionics Holdings, Inc. (OTCQB:EKSO), a robotic exoskeleton company, today announced that it has received clearance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to market its Ekso GT robotic exoskeleton for use in the treatment of individuals with hemiplegia due to stroke, individuals with spinal cord injuries at levels T4 to L5, and individuals with spinal cord injuries at levels of T3 to C7 (ASIA D), in accordance with device’s labeling. The Ekso GT is the first exoskeleton cleared by the FDA for use with stroke patients.
LOS ANGELES — There are tiny rat treadmills in the lab. And jars of Nutella, also for the rats. There are video cameras, heaps of electrodes, and instruments for slicing frozen brain tissue.
And in the center of it all: Reggie Edgerton, a 75-year-old physiologist who has spent four decades on a stubborn quest to prove, in the face of scientific ridicule, that severed spinal cords can be jolted back to life — and that paralyzed patients need not be paralyzed forever.
Now, he’s got the data to prove it.
After inventing the first-ever untethered bionic exoskeleton, he broke from his former company. Now this inventor is back with another breakthrough.
The man behind the first untethered bionic exoskeleton is back with a new robotic suit.
Homayoon Kazerooni led the team that developed BLEEX, the first viable actuated suit that didn’t need to be plugged in, back in 2005. Groundbreaking at the time, the technology was eventually spun off into Ekso Bionics, long a darling of the Bay Area hardware scene.
Injuries to the spinal cord partially or completely disrupt the neural pathways between the brain and the limbs. The consequences for the representation of the affected limbs in the brain can be drastic. Researchers have now measured how severely this representation is affected.
A strange sensation, but familiar to anyone who has ever been given local anaesthesia and watched while a doctor operated on their leg or arm: in that moment, your own body part seems foreign, as if it doesn’t belong to your body. One reason for this is that the brain still knows which position the limb occupied before the local anaesthetic took effect. As soon as it wears off, the spooky sensation disappears.