World's First Bionic Leg Makes Headlines - Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago

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Published on September 26, 2013

World's First Bionic Leg Makes Headlines in NEJM and Around the World

New England Journal of Medicine Case Study Highlights Unprecedented Technology for Lower-Limb Amputees

RIC's First Bionic LegThe science of bionics helped the more than 1 million Americans with leg amputations take a giant step forward, as the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago (RIC) revealed clinical applications for the world’s first thought-controlled bionic leg in the September 26, 2013 issue of The New England Journal of Medicine. This innovative technology represents a significant milestone in the rapidly growing field of bionics. Until now, only thought-controlled bionic arms were available to amputees.

Levi Hargrove, PhD, the lead scientist of this research at RIC’s Center for Bionic Medicine, developed a system to use neural signals to safely improve limb control of a bionic leg.

“This new bionic leg features incredibly intelligent engineering,” said Hargrove. “It learns and performs activities unprecedented for any leg amputee, including seamless transitions between sitting, walking, ascending and descending stairs and ramps and repositioning the leg while seated.”

Read more about this research here.

Media Coverage


RIC Press release, B-roll, Animation and Photos

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