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FDA Approves First Motorized Exoskeleton to Help Paraplegics Walk — Physician’s First Watch

Medical News |
June 30, 2014

FDA Approves First Motorized Exoskeleton to Help Paraplegics Walk

By Amy Orciari Herman

Edited by Susan Sadoughi, MD, and Jaye Elizabeth Hefner, MD

The FDA has approved the first motorized wearable exoskeleton device to allow patients with paraplegia due to spinal cord injury to sit, stand, and walk with help from a caregiver.

The ReWalk device consists of the following:

  • a metal brace that supports the legs and part of the upper body;

  • motors that allow movement at the hips, knees, and ankles;

  • a tilt sensor;

  • a backpack that holds a computer and power supply.

The patient wears a wireless remote control on the wrist, which is used to command ReWalk to stand, sit, or walk. Crutches are also used for extra support.

Reader Comments (1)

JOHN MAYER Other, Other, SMMC

A good start. Now to move on to an exoskeleton that incorporates complete mechanical legs and which doesn't require a wrist, as my friend Brandi Gregory was born with neither legs nor arms.

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