In decades past, individuals in Massachusetts and elsewhere who suffered traumatic brain injuries had very little hope of achieving a significant level of recovery. That is changing, however, as advancements in medicine and technology present new options for people who have been injured in an accident. An example is found in the story of a soldier who has regained the ability to walk with the help of a robotic exoskeleton.
The soldier was injured in 2006 when he was attacked with an ax while serving overseas. The resulting traumatic brain injury led doctors to advise him that he was unlikely to ever walk again. However, thanks to a dedicated team of researchers and medical staff, he has proven that assessment incorrect. He is the first brain injury patient for whom exoskeleton technology has been put to use, as the equipment was designed for individuals with spinal cord injuries.
The device works by assessing messages sent by the wearer's brain, and translating those signals into commands that direct the robotic exoskeleton to move as intended. The exoskeleton is comprised of metal rods running the length of the legs, with specialized insoles and motors at the hip and knee joints. The implications of the technology are astounding, and could change the lives of many individuals who suffer from brain or spinal cord trauma.
For anyone in Massachusetts who has been seriously injured in an accident, news of this and similar advancements in medicine and technology can give hope for improved levels of recovery. In years past, these types of injuries have left individuals unable to resume normal lives and dependent on others for even the most basic care needs. While technology like the robotic exoskeleton can be expensive to attain, the outcome of a successful personal injury lawsuit can give patients the ability to tap into the frontier of assistive devices.
Source: stripes.com, "Robotic exoskeleton helps vet with brain injury walk again", Aaron Kidd, Sept. 24, 2015