Robotic Therapy for Cerebral Palsy

Toy robot, credited to genewolf of flickr
Toy robot, credited to genewolf of flickr

Riley Hospital for Children will soon be introducing a new type of therapy for its patients with Cerebral Palsy… robots!  No, really.  A Robotics Center is due to open sometime this year, with equipment geared toward retraining the brain and improve motor functions.

This program will be utilizing robots for both upper-body and lower-body extremities.  The patient is prompted to engage in specific activities while the robots attached to their arms or legs adjust pressure and support according to what type of movement is desired.  During the therapy sessions, patients play a sort of video game (similar to games you’d play on a Wii) to achieve certain goals.  This interactive technology is not only retraining the brain, it’s also entertaining it!  You can see from the before and after videos from a similar robotic rehabilitation program how much of a difference this therapy makes.

Right now the program is seeking children aged 4-12 who might qualify for this therapy, and is covered by Medicaid.  To learn more about this project, visit the United Cerebral Palsy of Greater Indiana website, or call them at (317) 632-3561.  We’ll also keep our eye out for further developments with this exciting program and update as much as possible!

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  1. Cerebral palsy (CP) is a form of brain damage that affects thousands of newborn children around the world every year. With no definitive cure known as of yet, people who have CP tend to suffer its effects for their entire lives. It is caused by damage to the motor control centers inside the brain.

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