electrical implant helps parkinsons disease sufferers walk

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electrical implant helps parkinsons disease sufferers walk

Postby everything on Mon Apr 22, 2019 11:21 am

Fascinating restoration of electrical signals back to the brain

https://www.bbc.com/news/health-4780349 ... ting-story

Normal walking involves the brain sending instructions to the legs to move. It then receives signals back when the movement has been completed before sending instructions for the next step.

Image copyrightBBC NEWS/WESTERN UNIVERSITY
Image caption
The parts of the brain involved with movement (red on the left-hand scan) are not working properly, but three months into the trial those areas are now functioning
Prof Jog believes Parkinson's disease reduces the signals coming back to the brain - breaking the loop and causing the patient to freeze.

The implant his team has developed boosts that signal, enabling the patient to walk normally.

However, Prof Jog was surprised that the treatment was long-lasting and worked even when the implant was turned off.

He believes the electrical stimulus reawakens the feedback mechanism from legs to brain that is damaged by the disease.

"This is a completely different rehabilitation therapy," he said. "We had thought that the movement problems occurred in Parkinson's patients because signals from the brain to the legs were not getting through.

"But it seems that it's the signals getting back to the brain that are degraded."
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Re: electrical implant helps parkinsons disease sufferers walk

Postby Steve James on Mon Apr 22, 2019 11:36 am

Sounds great!
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