Steady work on a revolutionary treatment for paralyzed patients has yielded results.
In a study published in the journal Brain, researchers sponsored by the National Institutes of Health and the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation describe technology that allows immobile patients to move once again.
Heralded as a breakthrough treatment for spinal cord injury (SCI), the technology involves epidural electrical stimulation of the spinal cord. The stimulation, applied through a device implanted in the abdomen, shows promising results that include:
- Four patients, all men, diagnosed with complete paralysis can now voluntarily move hips, ankles and toes.
- The function recovered varies between patients. Two previously paralyzed men can do sit-ups. Others recovered bowel, bladder and sexual function.
- The overall health of each patient, including muscle mass and heart function improved along with the ability to move.
All four men were injured as a consequence of motor vehicle accidents. Each was diagnosed with chronic motor complete spinal cord injury. The promising results provide some evidence that communication ability between spinal nerve networks remains, even if neural access to the brain is terminated.
Approximately six million people live with SCI in the United States. Though the technology is in its infancy, hundreds of patients have applied for treatment. Continued efforts in this direction could yield treatments for those who suffer SCI in motor vehicle and other accidents across the United States each year.
If you have legal questions about compensation for an SCI in Florida, speak with experienced counsel in Bradenton.