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ReWalk rehab exoskeleton goes home with a patient

Jon Fingas, @jonfingas
July 8, 2014
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The FDA may have only cleared the ReWalk exoskeleton for home use just two weeks ago, but it's already finding use outside of hospitals and clinics. Retired US Army Sergeant Theresa Hannigan (shown meeting the President in March) has become the first patient in the US to take one of the mobility machines home, letting her walk and reclaim much of the independence she lost after being paralyzed. The Argo-made gear is expensive to own at nearly $70,000, but the Department of Veterans Affairs plans to cover the cost of ReWalk technology for Hannigan and anyone else who's eligible to use it. The exoskeletons will have some positive side-effects, to boot -- since recipients are much more active, they reduce the chances of heart disease and other conditions that might take them back to a doctor.

[Image credit: Debbie Hill-Pool/Getty Images]

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