use of exoskeletons to help patients walk again

FDA approves use of exoskeletons to help patients walk again

Each year, more than 795,000 people in the United States suffer a stroke, a leading cause of severe long-term disability.
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has just authorized the use of a robotic exoskeleton to assist stroke patients in their therapeutic sessions.

The body has approved the Atalante exoskeleton from the French-based company Wandercraft. This machine looks like a mecha suit from a sci-fi movie, its main purpose being to help patients with limited upper-body mobility to walk.
Each year, more than 795,000 people in the United States suffer a stroke, one of the leading causes of severe long-term disability, and it is precisely for people with this condition that Atalante is designed.

“Strokes reduce mobility in more than half of survivors aged 65 or over. With the collaboration of many healthcare teams around the world, Wandercraft has designed a state-of-the-art self-balancing multidirectional gait exoskeleton that enables intensive, early and specific gait training for neurorehabilitation therapy and improves the recovery of patients with stroke, especially those with significant upper extremity involvement,” said Matthieu Masselin, CEO of Wandercraft.

The company manager also considers that the approval of the US health authority represents a milestone for the firm of French origin.

“This authorization is a significant milestone for Wandercraft, but it is only the beginning as we are working on more indications,” added Masselin.

How does the exoskeleton work?

Atalante has an adjustable gait that patients and their therapists can gradually increase or decrease as the patient progresses. Even when the wearer is moving, the suit’s self-balancing technology prevents the wearer from falling over. It also gives them freedom of movement as they can naturally turn in multiple directions. Likewise, it allows all users to train their gait even if they cannot use their arms thanks to its hands-free operation.

“Its unique self-balancing feature allows patients to move in multiple directions hands-free, without an assistive device, and includes a dynamic balance mode not available anywhere else on the market,” Wandercraft stressed in the communication in which announced FDA clearance.

The French company has already deployed 22 copies of its Atalante exoskeleton in clinical settings, and five in other research settings. In the year 2022 alone, it had more than 330 patients treated and 12 exoskeletons deployed, more deployments than in the entire history of Wandercraft.

Melissa Galbraith
Melissa Galbraith is the World News reporter for Globe Live Media. She covers all the major events happening around the World. From Europe to Americas, from Asia to Antarctica, Melissa covers it all. Never miss another Major World Event by bookmarking her author page right here.