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Ekso Suit Physical Therapy - Exploring the Therapeutic Suit

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The Ekso suit is a battery-powered wearable suit that assists people in walking with aid and protection. Explore to learn its use in physical rehabilitation.

Medically reviewed by

Mohammed Wajid

Published At September 4, 2023
Reviewed AtNovember 24, 2023

Introduction

The physiotherapist, for any intervention, provides various exercises, treatments, and equipment to help the person recover and restore normal function. Taking a further step, the Ekso suit is an existing and new creation for physical therapy and rehabilitation. So, it is a robotic suit that mimics robotics in design, features, and benefits. With rehabilitation, the device presents extensive merits by influencing circulation, joint stability, musculoskeletal movements, and bladder function. The robotic suit received FDA approval as a good and effective assistive device for the rehabilitation of stroke, spinal cord injury, and brain injury recovery. But, this suit is recommended for individuals meeting certain requirements and criteria.

What Is Ekso Suit?

Ekso suit, also referred to as an exoskeleton, is an adjustable, battery-powered wearable robotic suit that is strapped and secured over the person’s clothing. This device enhances and improves the standing and walking way of individuals. So, it is a gait training system with supervision for impaired walking skills in spinal cord concerns, levels of paralysis, and various neurological conditions. So it restores normal function and gait without discomfort.

Ekso suit is designed with modifiable means and battery-powered motor systems to direct and drive the legs. The Ekso system is beneficial in the following illnesses.

What Are the Criteria for Ekso Suit?

The application of the Ekso suit paves the way for recovery and rehabilitation from stroke, spinal cord injury, and various conditions. And it is commonly suggested in people meeting certain criteria.

  • Weighing less than 220 lbs.

  • Height ranging from 60 to 76.8 inches.

  • No severe medical conditions like infection, orthostatic hypotension, or heart and lung illnesses.

  • No skin breakdown.

  • No colostomy.

  • Stable spine.

  • Having knee or hip contractures less than twelve degrees.

  • No unhealed fractures.

How Does Ekso Suit Physical Therapy Rehabilitation Work?

Ekso suit is easily accessible and adjustable wear that operates by encouraging muscular activity in the lower part of the body, particularly the lower extremity. Firstly, the physiotherapists will asses the person for criteria along with the level of spasticity prior to the commencement. Then, he provides a guideline on utilizing the suit. The Ekso suit is adjusted in the appropriate size and proportions, as tailored for the individual. The device can be used alone or in conjunction with a harness connecting to the ceiling. The harness-based training is done under the supervision of the therapists based on the sessions. The harness is applied for people to alleviate a small amount of weight, making it easier for movement. The therapist will draw a custom timeline chart on the length of the treatment according to the desires, treatment goals, and needs.

What Are the Ways to Incorporate Ekso Suit?

Ekso suit for rehabilitation is enhanced to the fullest only when one utilizes the device appropriately. So, here are several ethics to know.

  • Use the Suit at Every Step: The best part of the intervention is that it adapts to the person in multiple ways. So, the device operates on the strap up, securing and assisting the person whenever needed. It gives backing support right from balance to weight shift and gait learning. The device is incredibly adjustable based on the happening levels of progression and advancement. Therefore, one can utilize the device in every aspect, even by making it less assistive.

  • Avoiding Fatigue: The people who sustain medical conditions face challenges like fatigue, the exhaustion. It is normal to feel that way as they tend to fall slightly. The device is designed in a way that provides full support and extra protection. So, the person should have no fear and restrictions while walking. No fear of fatigue anymore.

  • Embrace Gait and Mobility: The Ekso suit device got its innovative design as a means to move with the natural range of motion. It is not the pieces of equipment but a readily wearable suit that adapts to the person’s joints and muscles efficiently. So, the person with routinary use can revise the basic gait while retrieving the function and mobility.

  • Withdrawing the Ekso Suit and System: The Ekso suit is an assistive device that indulges in dealing with multiple concerns. In addition, it aids people in walking and progressing more rapidly than anything. Besides, it is just a device that cannot be substituted for therapeutic exercises and physical performances. So, one must withdraw the device when it is time to. Also, be enduring with the exercises, as rehabilitation is still a long-term course.

What to Expect From Ekso Suit Physical Therapy?

The Ekso suit incredibly assists the person in waking up, standing, and moving after the revival of spinal cord injury, trauma, and other conditions. Generally, the patient needs two or three hands and the physiotherapist’s support to hold them steady upright while walking. Nevertheless, the Ekso system, the advanced equipment, made allowances for people to walk securely and rapidly without abetment. The Ekso suit intervention is often recommended subsequently with additional physiotherapy means like mobilization, strengthening, and functional training for full effects.

What Are the Benefits of the Ekso Suit in Physical Therapy?

The Ekso suit helps people learn the walking means by facilitating and easing the course of learning. Addedly, the Ekso system intervention includes the following benefits.

  • Relieves pain.

  • Increases strength in lower extremities.

  • Improvement of posture and balance.

  • Aligns the posture while walking.

  • Significantly and gradually improved the speed of walking.

  • Instructs and benefits the brain and muscles simultaneously.

  • Raises bone density.

  • Decreases cholesterol levels.

  • Diminishes risk and rate of cardiovascular attacks.

  • Decreases rate of diabetes.

  • Betterment of sleep patterns.

  • Decreased muscle spasticity.

  • Improved bladder and bowel function.

  • Improvement in quality of life.

Conclusion

The Ekso suit or exoskeleton primarily enhances the ability of people to wake, stand up, and walk. It is recommended for various purposes, from elderly care to stroke. It guides and teaches the user how to walk and helps restore normal gait. Subsequently, it increases endurance, acceptance, various skills, and capabilities. Nevertheless, there is a vital part to look at. The individuals should be open and experimental in incorporating the intervention to complete standards.

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Mohammed Wajid
Mohammed Wajid

Physiotherapy

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physical therapy
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