Paralysis from spinal cord injury (SCI) results in a cascade of mobility, functional, medical, emotional, and social problems. Once inpatient rehabilitation has been completed, people with SCI who are non-ambulators receive a wheelchair as standard of care. Since 2010, powered exoskeletons have become available to allow people with partial to complete motor paralyses to stand andwalk over ground.
Dr. Spungen has been investigating the effects of using an exoskeleton on the medical consequences of SCI since 2010. During this presentation, she will briefly review the secondary complications from SCI, appropriate candidates for use of these devices, the training regimes needed, and the results of adding walking to the life of a person who would otherwise be a wheelchair user and at the lowest end of the activity spectrum.