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How a robotic exoskeleton could aid treatment

Topic: How a robotic exoskeleton could aid treatment

Exercise rehabilitation can help people with multiple sclerosis (MS) manage their symptoms, but it is not as useful for those whose condition is at an advanced stage.

Experts have evaluated a new form of rehabilitation in which an individual exercises within a supporting robotic exoskeleton.

A small trial of exoskeleton-based exercise produced significant benefits.

If a larger trial confirms the results, exoskeleton-based rehabilitation may, one day, become the new standard of care for MS.

MS is a disease in which the body’s immune system attacks the central nervous system, often leading to a loss of mobility and cognitive function.

Research indicates that exercise rehabilitation, particularly that involving walking, is the most effective means of improving mobility and cognition in people with MS. Even a short course of walking-based exercise rehabilitation (ER) can provideTrusted Source benefits.

Advanced disability can, however, preclude participation in ER. Several studiesTrusted Source have shown that adaptive ER, such as body-weight-supported treadmill training and robot-assisted gait training, has not been very effective in people with substantial MS disability or produced additional benefits compared with gait training.

Recently, researchers from the Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation in New Jersey published the results of a randomized controlled trial of robotic-exoskeleton assisted ER (REAER).

Topic Discussed: How a robotic exoskeleton could aid treatment

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