CARMEL, New York -- After spending the last nine years in a wheelchair, a Putnam County man is walking again thanks to a new, wearable robotic device.
Rusty Chmelovsky, 39, was paralyzed from the waist down in a construction accident in 2008.
This year, he was selected to train in a ReWalk exoskeleton device at Burke Rehabilitation Hospital in White Plains. The battery-powered machine provides powered hip and knee motion, allowing patients with spinal cord injuries to stand, walk and turn.
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Chmelovsky is the first patient to use the device at Burke, and one of only 150 people in the country fitted with a ReWalk.
Having been fully trained, Chmelovsky can now take the device to his home in Carmel where he plans to use it for up to two hours a day.
"I'll just get better and better," he said. "Who knows, maybe someday I'll be running."
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Paralyzed Putnam County man walks again thanks to new robotic technology