Paralysed patients move legs and feet again


A breakthrough therapy that delivers electric stimuli to areas of the spinal cord that control the movements of hips, knees, ankles and toes could help paralysed patients regain movement.

A team of international researchers used epidural electric stimulation of the spinal cord and intense rehabilitative therapy to help four paralysed men regain movement.

After getting the device that delivers electric current to specific locations on the spinal cord, the four patients, who had been paralysed due to spinal cord injuries for more than two years, could move voluntarily their hips and ankles, wiggle their toes, and stand up for short periods. 

"This is groundbreaking for the entire field and offers a new outlook that the spinal cord, even after a severe injury, has great potential for functional recovery," explained lead author Claudia Angeli, a senior researcher with the Human Locomotor Research Center at Frazier Rehab Institute and an assistant in a news release.

Written By: ScienceAlert Staff
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  1. In reply to #1 by catphil:

    Three cheers for science!

    I’ll second that, this is yet more amazing stuff. What an age we live in.

  2. It’s a miracle. Praise be to the Messiah …. oh wait … it was just scientists. Well God works in mysterious ways.

  3. Only one of them looks as if he’s been paralysed for two years; the leg muscles, especially the quads, atrophy frighteningly quickly; when I had my knee cartilage operation, within ten days or so I could make out the outline of my femur.

    Good science though.

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