In a world first, researchers at the University of Louisville, Kentucky, have used epidural neurostimulation to help two paralysed people to walk again.
The study used a combination of locomotor training and electrical stimulation to help regenerate communication between the brain, spinal cord and body to allow these people to take their first steps since they were injured.
The study was published Monday in the New England Journal of Medicine. A study from the Mayo Clinic, co-authored by Professor Reggie Edgerton, was realeased simultaneously showing similar results and bringing the total number of people who have walked again to three.
For some years, SpinalCure Australia has seen neurostimulation as the intervention most likely to bring significant benefits to those with chronic spinal cord injuries in the shortest time. We have been raising funds for its establishment in Australia for some time and funding permitting we hope to see programs up and running in 2019.
Every day an accident results in another Australian being paralysed by a spinal cord injury. Their life and lives of their loved ones will be shattered.
Neurostimulation treatments have the potential to bring huge improvements to the quality of life of these people in the relatively near future. Not only has neurostimulation been shown to improve physical movement but volunteers have also reported improvements in the other things that plague people with spinal cord injuries, such as bladder and bowel control, sexual function and maintenance of body temperature
SpinalCure is very encouraged by these latest results, CEO Duncan Wallace comments:
“SpinalCure identified neurostimulation as an exciting and emerging field of research a number of years ago and we played a pivotal role in introducing the research to Australia. These results out of the United States are extremely exciting and we see this as further evidence that a cure for spinal cord injury is possible and now only a matter of time and funding.”
SpinalCure Australia funds and promotes the most promising research areas for spinal cord injury, including neurostimulation, to accelerate the path to the cure.
Kathryn Borkovic, SpinalCure Australia
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