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Epidural Stimulation

by Rushton,Jeff last modified Dec 15, 2011 03:21 PM

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What is epidural stimulation?
Epidural Stimulation is a method of stimulation that encourages the body to use its inherent nerve pathways to transfer an electrical current from an implanted electrode array to the targeted muscle(s). This electrode array is surgically implanted along the relevant section of spinal cord. The electrical current from the array “awakens” the circuitry in the spinal column, enabling the body to acknowledge and possibly respond to sensory input that it was previously disregarding.

Epidural Stimulation is, at a glance, similar to Functional Electrical Stimulation in that it uses electrical current to stimulate muscle activity. In Functional Electrical Stimulation, an electrode is placed on top of the skin so that an electrical current can be transferred from the electrode through the skin to activate a targeted muscle.

Who is eligible for the epidural stimulation study?
At this time the Epidural Stimulation study has approval for five participants. Three participants have already been selected. In general, participants may be considered for the epidural stimulation study if a spinal cord injury has rendered them unable to walk, stand, or move their legs. After an initial screening, individuals will be asked to complete 80 Locomotor Training sessions. Upon completion of the Locomotor Training further evaluation will establish what individuals are suitable for the epidural stimulation study.

We proudly published initial findings from our Epidural Stimulation research May 20, 2011 in the The Lancet.

How can I be considered for Human Locomotion research studies? Are you interested in becoming a research participant at Frazier Rehab Institute’s Human Locomotion Research Center? All interested parties should submit this research inquiry and designate your area of interest as research at the bottom of the form. The information you provide will be added to our potential participant database and will give our organization a clear picture of those parties with interest in our research programs. If you are eligible for any of our research studies, you will be contacted by our research staff.


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