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Stroke

Stroke damage repair

05/16/2005

Question:

Thank you for taking my question. I recently saw a program on tv about a man who lost both arms in a fire,he was fitted with prosthetic arms that were wired to working nerves in his shoulder that were rewired to his heart muscle rather than to the brain. When he would "think" about what he wanted to do with his prosthetic arm and hand it would send signals and it worked. My question is:would this "REWIRING OF THE NERVES" work with a real arm and hand of a stroke victim who currently cannot move his right arm and hand. I don`t know if Insurance would cover this type of operation and I`m sure its very expensive.But IF THIS TYPE OF OPERATION MIGHT WORK,I don`t care what it costs,I will raise the money somehow. I`ve watched my father spend the last 10 years of his life living a misreable existance he would not wish on his worst enemy. I am desperate to find a way to make his life enjoyable again. CAN ANYONE HELP US???

Answer:

I have not seen anything like what you are describing in the medical literature.  If this was not a fictional program, I would assume that I would have.  Thus, I cannot provide any further information other than to say that I am somewhat skeptical.  I wish such things were possible, but unfortunately what you say is not scientifically possible.

I can say that there are some emerging technologies that might one day prove to help stroke victims recover, but they are still being tested in clinical trials.  Until there is convincing scientific evidence that a technology works AND is safe, I cannot recommend them in good conscience.

For more information:

Go to the Stroke health topic, where you can:

Response by:

Brett   Kissela, MD Brett Kissela, MD
Assistant Professor of Neurology
Director, Neurology Residency Program
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati