Emirati with rare genetic condition regains mobility with the aid of smart technology

Ismail Sebugwaawo /Abu Dhabi Filed on September 9, 2021
Supplied photo

Lokomat therapeutic technology helped the young woman walk again

A 20-year-old Emirati woman who was unable to move her legs because of a genetic condition has regained her mobility after doctors treated her with smart technology.

Amira was born with Friedreich Ataxia, an inherited condition that affects the nervous system and restricts movement. Doctors at Sheikh Khalifa Medical City (SKMC), part of Abu Dhabi Health Services Company (Seha) treated Amira’s condition using state-of-the-art technology.

“Gaining my life back was a dream to me,” said Amira, who recently graduated from law school. “I am able to now move with minimal assistance. The journey wasn’t easy, but looking back at what I have achieved, I can say it was worth every drop of sweat.”

When the young Emirati arrived at SKMC’s Institute of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, she was unable to move her legs. The rehabilitation team at SKMC developed a personalised intensive treatment plan to help her recover, which included the use of Lokomat therapeutic technology.

Lokomat is a highly specialised exoskeleton robotic device designed to aid severely impaired adult and paediatric patients who are learning to walk again.

The intelligent device uses sensors to closely monitor movements, providing valuable feedback to the therapist throughout the session, which guides and maximises the effect of the training.

Dr Nawal Al Kaabi, SKMC’s chief medical officer, said: “This cutting-edge technology, along with the hands-on therapy provided by our highly qualified clinical expertise, provides a unique opportunity to our patients who experience severe disabling injuries and illnesses.”

Nivin Nabil Zayton, senior physiotherapist at SKMC, said: “We strive to provide a holistic treatment experience, at the centre of which lies compassion, to improve the quality of life for our patients, restoring movement and relieving their pain.”


Ismail Sebugwaawo

A professional journalist originating from Kampala, Uganda, Ismail is a happy father with strong attachment to family and great values for humanity. He has practiced journalism in UAE for the past 13 years, covering the country's parliament (FNC) and crimes, including Abu Dhabi Police, public prosecution and courts. He also reports about important issues in education, public health and the environment, with a keen interest in human interest stories. When out of reporting duties, he serves the Ugandan community in Abu Dhabi as he wants to see his countrymen happy. Exercising and reading are part of his free time.

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