Innovative ZeroG System Helps Spinal Cord Injury Patients At Seton Recovery Center

Spinal cord injury patients are always fearful that they may never have the life they once enjoyed.

Daniel Curtis, a quadriperetic, fears his everyday life in his wheelchair, but his fear has been displaced by a newly installed rehabilitation system at the Seton Brain & Spine Recovery Center, driving him on a mission to walk again.

The end game for me is the ability to walk,” explained Curtis.

ZeroG system is an innovative new balance training technology from Aretech that provides body-weight support. This state-of-the-art rehabilitation system helps a patient with balance and posture, which enables him or her to move independently. Curtis is hopeful that this tool will help him in his recovery from a swimming pool accident that left him incapable of moving about without the help of a wheelchair.

The novel technology is the first-ever gait and balance-assisted robotic system. Walking in the ZeroG is same as walking in a reduced gravity environment. A patient starts to walk with or without the help of a therapist, once he or she is attached to the system. The device detects if a patient starts to fall forward or backward and catches them to prevent injury. The system also monitors important patient information which a therapist can review in order to track recovery.

The Seton Brain & Spine Recovery Center, a member of the Seton Healthcare Family, is committed to assisting patients recover from spinal cord injuries. The Texas-based center has facilities all over the state. 

Dr. Roger Parthasarathy, medical director of the Seton Brain and Spine Recovery Center says:

I am extremely excited to be a part of this center. It is a unique spinal cord recovery center compared to others that are located mostly at large academic universities and have a philosophy of adaptation or retraining patients to adapt to their disabilities.”

ZeroG was developed with the help of the National Rehabilitation Hospital physical therapists and researchers. The technology is listed by the FDA. The device, which costs $220,000 a piece, was donated by the Lone Star Paralysis Foundation. 

A therapist can work with patients on training that includes:    

  • Overground walking
  • Stair climbing,
  • Dynamic balance and stability
  • Transfers
  • Side stepping
  • Deep knee bends
  • Treadmill training
  • Using assistive devices
  • Getting off the floor

Will I walk again, absolutely. There is no question in my mind and there really can’t be,” Curtis exclaimed confidently.