~e; electromomentum

From bc <human@electronetwork.org>
Date Sat, 2 Feb 2002 10:48:12 -0600

  a few articles to mention:

1-- Water jets could be lightning conductors  (water as lightning rod @ stadia)

2A-- Shocked into walking:  "...A partially paralysed man has walked 
to the shops with the help of tiny electric shocks to his spine."  in 
Montreal: http://www.nature.com/nsu/020128/020128-9.html

2B-- same story, Phoenix, Arizona:

>Fri Feb  1 17:16:30 2002
>  Posted at 9:09 p.m. PST Thursday, Jan. 31, 2002
>  Mercury News
>   Scientists have helped a partially paralyzed man walk the length 
>of three football fields by implanting electrodes in his spine.
>      While it doesn't quite make Arizona quadriplegic Ken Paulson 
>the bionic man, it does allow him to walk farther, faster and with 
>less effort.
>        Researchers say that if they can prove the therapy works on a 
>large scale, it could help perhaps one-third of the country's 
>230,000 spinal cord patients -- those who still have some feeling in 
>their legs and some control of their leg muscles.
>      ``This will not take the wheelchair away from me completely, 
>but it has given me a whole new perspective -- independence,'' said 
>Paulson, 45, who was injured in a 1997 car accident. ``You put me in 
>the Back Forty of a Wal-Mart parking lot now and I can probably walk 
>to the door.''
>     Researchers stress that while Paulson had positive results, 
>other people may not. Large-scale studies are needed, they said. 
>Even after more than a year of physical therapy, Paulson cannot 
>climb stairs or walk backward.
>       Researchers from Arizona State University and Good Samaritan 
>Regional Medical Center in Phoenix reported Paulson's recovery in 
>the journal Spinal Cord.
>      The experimental procedure, which is not yet available to other 
>patients, involves having patients walk on treadmills while their 
>weight is supported by a harness. This retrains the legs on how to 
>      Later, doctors implant electrodes on the spinal cord to 
>stimulate the neuro circuit, which coordinates leg muscles. Although 
>both have been tried separately in the past, this is the first time 
>they have been used in combination.
>      ``The results were way beyond my expectation,'' said Jiping He, 
>a professor of bioengineering at Arizona State, who was involved in 
>the research. ``I thought we would see some improvements, that he 
>could make a bathroom trip or get into the shower stall, but now he 
>can walk across the street.''
>      After treadmill therapy alone, Paulson could walk 10 feet in 
>two minutes, He said. But after the electrodes were implanted, 
>Paulson could walk more than 100 feet in the same two minutes, and 
>has worked up to walking 1,000 feet before getting tired. Doctors 
>hope he'll be able to switch from a walker to a cane for balance.
>      Jessica Agramonte, senior research scientist and gait 
>specialist at Stanford University Medical School, said that while 
>the results are promising, ``One must be very cautious in 
>interpreting a single case study, particularly for patients with 
>incomplete spinal injury -- they can have a very individual course 
>of recovery.''
>       Others called it a  move in the right direction.
>      ``The research should definitely excite some interest.  This 
>could have some help for patients with multiple sclerosis and those 
>with incomplete spinal cord injuries,'' said Dr. Inder Perkash, 
>director of the spinal cord injury program at Palo Alto Veterans 
>Affairs Health Care System.
>      But Perkash noted that patients must be highly motivated and 
>willing to exercise frequently and push their limits.
>      ``It's a lot of work,'' Perkash cautioned. ``If a patient does 
>not exercise and maintain his muscle tone, he will regress.''
>       Although any developments in the area of spinal cord research 
>are exciting, some patient advocates said, the field still has a far 
>way to go.
>      ``Being able to walk 1,000 feet is great, but that's not going 
>to get you a job,'' said Marcie Roth, executive director of the 
>National Spinal Cord Injury Association. ``It's not going to address 
>a lot of the critical challenges that people with spinal cord 
>injuries face every day.''
>  Staff writers Barbara Feder and Glennda Chui contributed to this report.
>Address of original story:
>  SiliconValley.com - Inside The Tech Economy
  (fair-use of copyright.edu; ~e.org 2oo2)

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