Augusta, GA - Individuals in the Augusta area dealing with difficulty walking or hand paralysis as a result of stroke, multiple sclerosis, or other central nervous conditions such as traumatic brain injury or spinal cord injury have a new treatment option. Doctors Hospital is offering the NESS L300® and the NESS H200®; non-invasive medical devices that allow individuals suffering with mobility and motility issues to have greater control of their extremities, making it easier to walk and move their hands.

How do they work?

  • The NESS L300® device consists of three parts: a small transmitter in the shoe, a leg cuff wrapped just below the knee and a hand-held remote control that lets the user adjust the level of stimulation and turn the unit on and off. When an individual tries to walk, the NESS L300 sends electronic signals to stimulate nerves in the lower leg which, in turn, signal muscles to help the user lift their foot off the ground. The device automatically adjusts to changes in walking speed and terrain.
  • The NESS H200® Wireless uses mild Functional Electrical Stimulation (FES) to improve hand function and promote motor recovery. The device consists of three components: a wireless, lightweight and comfortable functional stimulation support (orthosis); a small handheld control unit that communicates wirelessly with the system; and a clinician’s programmer that allows for easy programming and patient activity tracking.

Why are they important?

  • People with central nervous conditions or diseases such as stroke, multiple sclerosis, traumatic brain injury and spinal cord injury often experience gait movement disorders, such as foot drop, which is a result of partial leg paralysis. Gait movement disorders not only result in difficulty walking, but also may lead to fatigue, falls or abnormal walking patterns. The NESS L300® can help these individuals regain mobility and facilitate muscle re-education, prevent muscle atrophy, maintain or increase range of motion and increase local blood flow.
  • These patients may also experience paralysis or moving their upper extremities and often have difficulty holding, or grasping and releasing, objects. The NESS H200® is designed to provide certain individuals with hand paralysis the ability to grasp and release objects while performing ordinary and essential activities of daily living. This new wireless system allows patients to better integrate back into daily life, increasing therapy time which may lead to increased patient compliance and better outcomes.

“Limited mobility may impact independence and self-confidence by making once-simple tasks such as walking to get the mail or going up and down stairs difficult, if not nearly impossible,” says Dr. Robert Harmon, Medical Director of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation Services at Doctors Hospital. “Mobility issues impacting the upper extremities, such as the hands, make it difficult to perform many functions of daily living from the ability to dress his or herself to opening a bottle of water. These devices provide our team with an effective, non-invasive treatment option that can easily be incorporated into everyday life, helping our patients regain hand and upper extremity function with the goal of increasing independence.”

Recognized for its outstanding care, Doctors Hospital Inpatient Rehab Facility has been awarded a three-year Certified Acute Rehab Facility (CARF) accreditation for its adult physical rehabilitation program and a two-year accreditation for the specialty stroke rehabilitation by The Joint Commission. This makes the Inpatient Rehab Facility the only CARF accredited facility in the area.