June 07, 2016      

The Ekso GT exoskeleton from Ekso Bionics will now use the network and global Internet of Things (IoT) SIM from telecommunications giant Vodafone to ensure reliable communications for diagnostics and improved access to patient data with the exoskeleton.

The Ekso GT exoskeleton is designed to help physical therapists mobilize patients earlier, more frequently and with a greater number of high-intensity steps. The IoT aspect of all this monitors the real-time performance of the Ekso GT exoskeletons, providing therapists with data on how the patients’ rehabilitation is progressing.

“The Internet of Things is enabling all types of medical devices to be connected anywhere in the world, which is directly affecting the care that patients are receiving,” said Vodafone Group’s Head of IoT for the Americas Andrew Morawski. “The focus that Ekso Bionics has on helping stroke and spinal cord injury patients to increase mobility is making a significant impact on the quality of life for its users.”

The Ekso GT is the world’s only FDA-approved exoskeleton for use with spinal and stroke victims. It is strapped over the users clothing, enabling individuals to achieve mobility, strength, or endurance not otherwise possible. The Ekso GT can provide adaptive amounts of power to either side of the patient’s body, helping to improve results for patients.

The Ekso GT exoskeleton is currently available in the United States, Mexico, Canada, South Africa, and in most European countries. The Ekso GT is offered in more than 150 leading rehabilitation institutions around the world and has helped enable its users to take more than 50 million steps not otherwise possible.

One of those patients, Mark Pollock, was able to voluntarily control his leg muscles and take thousands of steps in an exoskeleton. With help from researchers at UCLA, Pollock used an Ekso GT exoskeleton and made substantial progress after receiving a few weeks of physical training without spinal stimulation and then just five days of spinal stimulation training in a one-week span, for about an hour a day.

Watch Pollock’s story in the video atop this page.