A program coming to the University of Louisville will test new rehabilitation techniques on people with spinal cord injuries.
A medical team in California recently found that a regimen of medication, electrical stimulation and exercise could rehabilitate paralyzed rats. The researchers from that study will now work with U of L doctors at the Frazier Rehabilitation Center to try the same techniques on humans.
U of L Dr. Susan Harkema says the goal of the program is to help restore walking abilities to people with spine injuries.
“The mechanism behind this is really taking advantage of new knowledge about the neural circuitry that’s still healthy and using the stimulation, the retraining and the drugs to essentially replace that function that was lost with the spinal cord injury,” she says.
Doctors are currently seeking patients for the program. No start date for the program has been set.