Man Paralysed From Waist Down Makes History By Walking Again Using Mind-Controlled Implant To Power His Legs
Snowmobiles can be dangerous if not properly used have been the cause of many snow-related injuries. Despite the precaution one may take when riding, one wrong turn may be the most ‘paralyzing’ moment of their life.
For Jered Chinnock, a 29-year-old man from Wisconsin, that day came five years ago when he had a terrible accident on his snowmobile that left him paralyzed from the waist down. But thanks to a team led by researchers from the Mayo Clinic, Jered has gained back mobility he never thought he’d have again.
Doctors decided to perform a surgery that included implanting a remote-controlled electrode into Chinnock’s spine. This would make it possible to stimulate surviving spinal nerves. Thanks to this innovative approach of his doctors, Jered was able to walk the entire length of an American football field with the help of a walker.
When Jered Chinook first began walking with the aid of the electrode stimulator, he required a harness as an added precaution. He was finally able to forego the harness 25 weeks after surgery and has recently walked continuously for 16 minutes with the aid of a walker.
Doctors are still trying to figure out the exact level of electrical stimulation it takes to get severed spinal nerves to respond. They have theorized it related to keeping open communication with the brain.
The team continues to study their results and hopes to see how similar technologies help other patients with limited mobility.