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Thread: The Walk Aid... Real or Fake

  1. #1
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    The Walk Aid... Real or Fake

    Hey guys, I came across this link to a device which supposedly helps people that are paralyzed walk again. Are any of you guys familiar with it?



    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ysLsZuy1VRg&feature=fvw

  2. #2
    I am familiar with it and it is a valid medical device. I will be tested for use of the device early in the new year. To be fair, it is not to help paralyzed people walk again - the story is a little misleading in that regard. It is to amplify stimulation of the muscles that control dorsiflexion so you can walk without dragging your feet if you are not strong enough or have sufficient damage that you cannot do this yourself. You'll notice early in the clip that she exaggerates lifting her feet when she walks because she has a serious drop-foot condition affecting both sides. Instead of using AFO's, she uses the Walk Aid, which is functional electrical stimulation that works dorsiflexion. There are sensors in the shoes that activate the electrical impulse in the device worn around the calf and stimulate the foot to dorsiflex when you take a step. You need to have appropriate muscle function in the legs that would allow you to walk with AFO's if you want to consider using a Walk Aid.
    Last edited by Corinne1; 12-04-2010 at 01:38 PM.

  3. #3
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    Thank you Corinne!!!

  4. #4
    It's definitely for real, but it doesn't work for everyone. I was evaluated for it and the electrode caused such sharp stinging pain that wearing it would have been impossible. But it doesn't cause pain in most cases, just a tingling sensation or buzz. There is another device called (I believe) the Bioness L300 which operates on the same principle Corinne1 describes, in a slightly different way.

  5. #5
    Moderator jody's Avatar
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    it works for some. I tried something like it, and can't stand the shock. it causes my legs and feet to stab and burn. I think it is a valid and useable product for some with drop foot.

  6. #6
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    Thanks guys!!

  7. #7
    Nice...

  8. #8
    That would be awsome to try. I work in a spinal cord recovery center and would love to be able to have one for the facility

  9. #9
    i was evaluated for it but all it did was amplify my spasms. if you get seizures, you need to be extra careful using it.
    mitochondrial disease complex 1 deficiency, suspected HSP
    type 3 ehlers danlos syndrome w/ type 1 overlap, g and j tubes
    aspergers & friends
    survivor of 2 TIA strokes

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