The market leading gait robot from Switzerland helps patients learn to walk again. For over ten years neurological patients worldwide have trained with the Lokomat® by the Swiss based medical technology company Hocoma. The company that has received various awards has now sold the 500th Lokomat to one of the leading hospitals in Hong Kong. The Lokomat was the first automated gait therapy robot and is the scientifically and therapeutically most reviewed robotic device. Today, the therapy solution is considered as standard in neurorehabilitation of lower extremities and is being used in leading hospitals and clinics worldwide. Nine of the ten by U.S. News best rated hospitals in neurorehabilitation offer the Lokomat in their clinical routine.
Trend-setting in international neurorehabilitation
The Lokomat is based on the research and development activities at the Balgrist University Hospital, Switzerland, and has been developed and produced near Zurich by Hocoma, a spin-off of the University Hospital, since 2001. It is the global market leader and is in clinical usage in almost 60 countries. Over 140 scientific publications about the Lokomat therapy have been published in peer reviewed journals2 – more than any other robotic device for lower extremity rehabilitation. Hocoma is continuously developing the Lokomat in cooperation with scientific partners and expanding it with new options. Today, the 6th generation of the device is successfully being used in clinical routine.
Dr. Gery Colombo, CEO of Hocoma, explains: „We are working closely with leading hospitals and research institutes. Thereby we can offer patients and therapists the highest possible benefit. Due to its high medical standard and the continuous development the Lokomat is considered forward-looking and worldwide as trendsetting in robotic gait therapy.”
Therapeutic success by constant challenge
The Lokomat is used to improve mobility in individuals following stroke, spinal cord injury, cerebral palsy and multiple sclerosis as well as other neurological diseases and injuries.
Intensive and repetitive training is crucial when relearning to walk. Thereby it is important to give the brain the correct impulses for a natural gait pattern. The Lokomat automates gait therapy on a treadmill, enabling an intensive and repetitive training. The motivating exercises in a virtual reality and the constant feedback provided by the Lokomat guide the patients while relearning a physiological gait pattern.
Success after neurological disorders
“Already after the second therapy session with the Lokomat, I started to feel my calf muscles pulsating”, explains Phillip Bryant. After a serious car accident the doctors told him that he would never be able to walk again. Already after 16 therapy sessions Phillip’s leg force measured by the Lokomat sensors improved greatly from 8 to 44 percent. “I noticed that my steps got easier”, explains Phillip and ads, “I’ve continued home therapy besides the Lokomat and now I’m doing leg presses pushing 30 pounds.” In June 2012 he was standing on the beach as the best man on his friend’s wedding.3
Due to the exact feedback of the therapy progress the patients are motivated to train longer and more intensively. Thereby the patient is challenged to give their best leading to an increase of abilities and strength. The continuous feedback also supports therapists and patients when setting further therapy goals.