After four years of being paralyzed, Rob Summers, 25, finally gained the freedom to move after a successful implant operation of a group of doctors in Louisville, Kentucky.
Summers encountered a car accident in 2006 leading to his paralysis from chest all the way down to his feet. After three years of physical theraphy, his condition had not improved. However, the doctors gave him hope when he suddenly stood within days after the successful implant of an electrical stimulator onto the lining of his spinal cord.
Summers was greatly relieved upon achieving the freedom to move saying:
“It was the most incredible feeling. After not being able to move for four years, I thought things could finally change. This procedure has completely changed my life. For someone who for four years was unable to even move a toe, to have the freedom and ability to stand on my own is the most amazing feeling. My physique and muscle tone has improved greatly, so much that most people don’t even believe I am paralyzed.”
Dr. Susana Harkema, the Head of Research at the Kentucky Spinal Cord Injury Research Center, explained how the implant made Summers move.
“The stimulator sends a general signal to the spinal cord to walk or stand. That tells us we can access the circuitry of the nervous system, which opens up a whole new avenue for us to address paralysis.”
Photo Credit: E Canada Now