Modern technology helps local man walk again

SCHENECTADY, ​​NY (NEWS10) – A year after being paralyzed in a construction accident, technology has allowed a local man to get back on his feet.

“It’s a great day today! “

Douglas Avreu arrived in Brazil’s capital region in 2016. A year ago, he was working on a construction site. While building a wall, he fell from the third floor and suffered a spinal cord injury that left him paralyzed from waist to toe. It was his faith that got him through these first weeks.

“Yes, if you have faith in God you have to keep fighting for everything,” he said.

In October, Doug discovered the ReWalk personal robotic exoskeleton. He uses a watch-like device that sends signals to the motors at his hips and knees to control his movements.

And now he’s back on his feet.

“In about 20-30 sessions of using the machine, he became completely proficient and independent to be able to walk with it, stand with it, use it to walk outdoors, indoors, in the grass.” , Sunnyview physiotherapist known as Cono Cirone. “We went up and down the hill. “

Sunnyview Rehabilitation Hospital has a partnership with ReWalk and has used its exoskeletons in the physiotherapy department.

“The device obviously gives people with spinal cord injuries a new lease of life, I like to say,” said Lauren Pelttier, business development manager for ReWalk Robotics. “This allows them to be standing and ambulatory both at home and outside the community. This is not only for the health benefits, but also to be at eye level and to regain the confidence and quality of life that able-bodied people sometimes take for granted.

Doug has been identified as a perfect candidate for home use, and on Tuesday he brought one home with him.

“It’s very exciting because when I was in the hospital they said maybe you won’t walk anymore, and now I can see my legs moving, and it’s amazing,” he said. he declares.

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