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Spinal Implant Enables Exercise for Paralyzed Limbs

Photo courtesy of Flickr.

Engineers have developed a microchip muscle stimulator that can be implanted into the spinal canal, allowing paraplegics to exercise paralyzed muscles, ScienceDaily reports.

The implant, which is the size of a child's fingernail, is the first device small enough to be inserted into the spinal canal and contains electrodes and muscle stimulator in one, providing better and more muscle stimulation. 

"Stimulation of more muscle groups means users can perform enough movement to carry out controlled exercise such as cycling or rowing," said Professor Andreas Demosthenous, who led the project.

According to ScienceDaily, the chip could also be used to restore functions such as bladder stimulation and suppress spasms.

--Nick Davidson

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