SCIENCE: PARALYSED MEN CAN MOVE AGAIN

Electrical stimulation on their spinal cords have enabled four disabled men to move their legs after years paralysed. According to a report in the journal Brain, the electricity makes the spinal cord more receptive to the few messages still arriving from the brain. The spinal cord acts like a high-speed rail line carrying electrical messages from the brain to the rest of the body. But if there is any damage to the track, then the message will not get through.They were able to bend their knees, flex their toes and ankles. Watch this video from the BrowTown Channel:

A team at the University of Louisville and the University of California have been pioneering electrical stimulation of the spinal cord below the injury.

Three years ago they reported that Rob Summers – a keen baseball player who was paralysed from the chest down in a hit-and-run car accident – was able to move his legs while supported on a treadmill.

Andrew Meas, Dustin Shillcox, Kent Stephenson and Rob Summers were treated at the University of Louisville's Kentucky Spinal Cord Injury Research Centre.

Andrew Meas, Dustin Shillcox, Kent Stephenson and Rob Summers were treated at the University of Louisville’s Kentucky Spinal Cord Injury Research Centre.

The whole report, by James Gallagher,  is on the BBC website. And there is also a comment from the highly respectful  Medical Correspondent, Fergus Walsh. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-26920521

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