Pediatrics

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NIH creates robotic exoskeleton to treat crouch gait in children with cerebral palsy

August 28, 2017

Researchers from the NIH Clinical Center Rehabilitation Medicine Department have created the first robotic exoskeleton that demonstrated significant reduction among crouch gait in children and adolescents with cerebral palsy, according to results recently published in Science Translational Medicine.

“Most wearable exoskeletons have been designed for adults with paralysis, with the exoskeleton replacing the lost function of the user’s,” researcher Thomas C. Bulea, PhD, staff scientist in the NIH Clinical Center Department of Rehabilitator Medicine, said in a press release from the NIH. “We sought to create a device that could safety and effectively improve the posture of children with crouch gait while they walked. The improvements in their walking along with their preserved muscle activity, make us optimistic that our approach could train a new walking pattern in these children if deployed over an extended time.”

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