New Exo-Skeleton Robot Lets Paraplegics Walk Again
By KTLA News, Courtesy CNN
DOWNEY, California — An amazing new exo-skeleton robot is enabling patients with lower-limb paralysis to walk again.
Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center in Downey is the only hospital in the Western U.S. to get the ReWalk system.
The ReWalk robots were donated to the facility, and they’re worth about $85,000 each.
The technology was developed by an Israeli engineer who is paralyzed.
“With the kinds of materials available today — micro computers and very light weight motors — someone with complete paralysis can walk,” Chief Medical Officer Dr. Mindy Aisen said.
37-year-old Agnes Fejerdy demonstrated the system live on KTLA on Monday.
“She can climb stairs, get in and out of a car, go in and out of a restroom [and] walk really at the speed that anyone would be walking down the street,” Aisen said.
“It’s surreal, really, it’s amazing,” Aisen added.
“I’ve been in my chair 20 years and I’ve never seen this kind of device ever,” patient advocate Gilbert Salinas said.
Fejerdy says her dream is to “go out to the streets and talk with the people face to face… and not from the wheel chair.”
The ReWalk is meant for paraplegics only, but the hope is that one day, people paralyzed from the neck down will also be able to use it.
only approved the device for hospital settings.
Researchers hope to get it approved for use at home as well.
They say the ReWalk can give people back their freedom and help prevent the health complications associated with paralysis.