By Aabida Dhanji
A new commercial product has been released to help stroke and spinal cord injured patients recover from arm and hand paralysis.
In the making since the late 1990s, MyndMove uses electrical impulses to stimulate movement, said Diana Pilura, CEO of MyndTec Inc.
“This is the first of many products, that we hope to develop to improve functions and increase the independence in their patients,” she said.
Pilura said MyndMove came about as fundamental research from the founding scientist, Dr. Popovic, who is the chair of Spinal Cord Injury Research at Toronto Rehab.
“Two years ago we established a company and raised money for it so we could make a commercial product,” she said.
“The Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario) helped us leverage money raised from our angel developers, FedDev Ontario matched that program so we could continue to develop our product and get approval from Health Canada,” she said.
The FedDev Ontario news release in June 2013 said, “The investment will help MyndTec Inc. to commercialize an innovative medical device that helps restore voluntary movement in people experiencing paralysis due to stroke, spinal cord injury or traumatic brain injury.”
The goal was to develop a strategy to help spinal cord injury patients to get their arms moving again and use electrical impulses to help them move muscles that they weren’t moving anymore, said Pilura.
“Dr. Popovic discovered that instead of having to design products that patients had to wear all the time, he could get people to recover over a few months, where they recover their own voluntary movement,” she said.
Currently MyndMove is in a few clinics in Ontario said Pilura. A senior media relations advisor from the Ontario Medical Association said MyndMove is very new and not in use everywhere yet, and therefore couldn’t provide any comments on it.