Health Watch - Danger: Learning to Walk Again

Health Watch is a Public Service of the Office of News and Publications and is intended to provide general information only and should not replace the advice of a medical professional. You should contact your physician if you have questions about any of these topics.


This week on Health Watch, we’re talking about how medical science can help in coping with and recovering from dangerous situations. Although modern medicine improves your chances of surviving a traumatic injury, there’s more hard work required to return to daily life. Sometimes, you have to start all over again with something as simple as walking.

A spinal injury can mean never walking again. Even if a patient isn’t left paralyzed, learning to walk again can be a challenge. That’s where technology can help with rehabilitation. There’s a robotic walking device that allows patients to strengthen muscles and retrain their brains and spinal cords to signals legs to take steps.

Dr. Patricia Smith, chair of physical therapy at UT Southwestern Medical Center, says this technology helps people with neurological injuries regain functional independence, which impacts their quality of life. 

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March 2011


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