8 – Virtual reEmbodiment (VrE) as a treatment for chronic deafferentation pain in subjects with Spinal Cord Injury

Developing FES-cycling for health and recovery after spinal cord injury

University College London, Award: £10,000, Date of Award: 13 Aug 01

The long term goal is to produce a lumbo-sacral nerve root stimulator system for thoracic paraplegics which can be used for bladder/bowel control and cycling exercise. FES-cycling may alleviate some of the ill-health, following spinal cord injury. The implant will make cycling more convenient to use than surface-electrode systems. The medium term goal is to carry out an EPSRC-funded project to demonstrate these health benefits.

This application is to allow the Research Fellow involved on the project to carry out three tasks which will help develop FES-cycling for wider use and facilitate the health study. These tasks are: to develop better electrode trousers; to begin the design of a stimulator for FES-cycling which gets approval from the regulator; and to complete current pilot work with four FES-cyclists.

This was a successful pilot study which led to a successful application to EPSRC to fund a multi-national study.