September Update - Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago

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Honored & Inspired –
Tips from 24 Years at the Top

People – Leading by Example

RIC is honored to continue to make history as the first and only hospital of any kind in the world to earn the #1 ranking by U.S. News & World Report for the 24th consecutive year.

We view this recognition as a public tribute to our team of relentless innovators who continually push the boundaries of what’s possible to bring our patients greater hope and ability. Their passion, dedication, and commitment truly exemplify our mission to Advance Human Ability™

Top Ten U.S. News & World Report List

#1 Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago – Chicago, IL (55.4%)

#2 Kessler Institute of Rehabilitation – West Orange, NJ (30.9%)

#3 TIRR Memorial Herman – Houston, TX (29.2%)

#4 Mayo Clinic – Rochester, MN (23.6%)

#4 University of Washington Medical Center – Seattle, WA (23.6%)

#6 Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, Massachusetts General Hospital – Boston, MA (22%)

#7 Craig Hospital – Englewood, CO (16.9%)

#8 MossRehab – Elkins Park, PA (12.9%)

#9 Rusk Rehabilitation at NYU Langone Medical Center – New York, NY (11.7%)

#9 Shepherd Center – Atlanta, GA (11.7%)


Research – Invest in the future, making research a priority

RIC operates the largest rehabilitation research enterprise in the Nation with more than $85MM in grants, representing an increase of 13% over last year and nearly 4 times that of any other rehabilitation hospital. Our leadership in the areas of spinal cord injury, traumatic brain injury, robotic and virtual reality-based stroke therapies, neurological rehabilitation, outcomes research, rehabilitation engineering research and mobility technology and integration with the clinical teams enable us to translate findings into the patient care setting in real time creating faster and better patient recoveries.

Research program example

The R24 program, Engineering for Neurologic Rehabilitation, is one of only six programs in the country awarded by the National Institutes of Health. This team is using neural engineering and robotic techniques to better understand, diagnose, and treat different neurological disorders including brain injury, multiple sclerosis, and Parkinson’s disease.


Research – Brain stimulation prompts national study

A breakthrough study combines a new non-invasive brain stimulation technique with traditional occupational therapy to improve upper limb movement recovery and give patients back the independence they lost as a result of their strokes.

“This study represents what could be a significant breakthrough in the treatment of strokes,” said Dr. Richard L. Harvey, Medical Director of RIC’s Center for Stroke Rehabilitation and lead scientist on this study. “Our results indicate that targeting stimulation to the correct area can set up the brain to learn and retain more than during traditional stroke rehabilitation.” In fact, 80% of the stroke survivor study participants regained arm & hand use, representing 30% more than previously possible with standard therapies.

RIC worked with Nexstim Corporation to apply this novel type of non-invasive brain stimulation – navigated brain stimulation (NBS) to standard stroke rehabilitation. After a stroke blocks blood to the brain, some regions of the affected brain hemisphere become less active, while some areas on the healthy side of the brain become more active. By externally and painlessly stimulating the overly active parts of the healthy brain with NBS magnetic waves, these targeted parts calm down. The study indicates that when the overly active healthy brain areas quiet down the stroke-damaged areas respond more fully and sustainably to occupational therapy.

Now that the pilot study is complete, RIC has expanded the study and is currently managing 12 other research centers across the United States – the first large-scale trial of its kind to take a major step toward clinical availability of this stroke therapy.

All participating research centers

  1. Central Site: RIC Chicago, IL – Satellite Site: RIC Northbrook, IL
  2. TIRR Memorial Hermann Hospital – Houston, TX
  3. Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital – Boston, MA
  4. Ohio State University – Columbus, OH
  5. Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center – Center Downey, CA
  6. Burke Rehabilitation Hospital – White Plains, NY
  7. Duke University Medical Center – Durham, NC
  8. Columbia Cornell New York Presbyterian Hospital – New York, NY
  9. Shepherd Center – Atlanta, GA
  10. University of Cincinnati – Cincinnati, OH
  11. Indiana University – Indianapolis, IN
  12. Mayo Clinic – Arizona