Key idea: A nerve-stimulation device controlled by a touchscreen tablet was recently able to help three completely paralysed patients walk, cycle, and even swim.
Original author and publication date: Bharat Sharma – February 8, 2022
Futurizonte Editor’s Note: We are clearly entering a new ear in healthcare and health treatments thanks to AI and new technologies.
From the article:
In a research outlined on Monday (Feb. 07), scientists gave a new leash of life of three people who had suffered serious spinal cord injuries that left them paralysed in a region called the “thoracic spine” situated below the neck and above the back.
Most patients with the nerve-stimulation implant suffered injuries one to nine years before receiving the treatment.
Science is magical – the patients were able to take their very first steps within an hour of receiving the implant.
Controlled by artificial intelligence software, the implant gave the patients wide-ranging abilities six months after receiving the treatment. They were able to do a lot more than walking, including activities like cycling and swimming in settings outside of the clinic.
They simply controlled the nerve stimulation device with a touchscreen tablet. All patients are men aged 29, 32, and 41 who suffered spinal cord injuries in road accidents.
Published in the journal Nature Medicine, the study was undertaken by Grégoire Courtine and Jocelyne Bloch of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne. A Netherlands-based company called Onward Medical is helping commercialise the system, Reuters reported.
Trials for the nerve implant will begin in the United States in about a year, hoping to give people with injuries a second chance at a normal life.