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Dimitry Sayenko, M.D., Ph.D.

Sayenko bio

Dimitry Sayenko, M.D., Ph.D.

Assistant Professor

Department of Neurological Surgery


I am a new member to KSCIRC and the University of Louisville. After completing medical school in Moscow, I worked at the Institute for Biomedical Problems – a leading Russian research institute specializing in biomedical aspects of manned space missions. I have been involved in studies investigating the negative effects of microgravity on motor control of cosmonauts and astronauts. Due to my clinical background, I understood from the beginning that changes occurring in the nervous and musculoskeletal systems after space flight are very much alike to those following a number of neuromuscular injury or disease. I was thrilled with the idea that treatments for functional recovery during and after space flight might be implemented in rehabilitation. I am very excited with the opportunity to develop a clinical research program directed toward the study of the plasticity potential of the central nervous system and musculature after SCI and development of novel treatments to promote functional recovery. I intend to use my multidisciplinary background to address current issues of the neuromuscular rehabilitation after SCI such as recovery of standing and sitting balance, and improvement of strength and endurance in impaired muscles. Being part of the project “Spinal Epidural Electrode Array to Facilitate Standing and Stepping in SCI” I investigate the neuromodulation of evoked muscle potentials induced by epidural spinal cord stimulation after SCI, and how the epidural stimulation therapy improves balance function during quite and perturbed standing. I will also explore the strategies for regaining functionality during self-governed standing and sitting, and will examine non-specific effects of the balance training in SCI on respiratory function, gait, and muscle strength.

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April 2013 »
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