ALBERTVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) – Twelve years ago, Erwin Diaz’s life changed forever. His life has changed again this month as he learns to walk using a robotic exoskeleton.
Diaz suffered a spinal cord injury in 2012 that left him paralyzed from the waist down. After meeting David Bishop at Rehab Partners in Albertville, the two embarked on a mission to get Ervin walking again.
“The ReWalk system was available in the United States in 2014, but this is the first patient in Alabama,” Bishop said. “The system helps move the patient’s legs forward so they can walk. It was difficult, but very rewarding to work with a patient like Erwin. He is a very hard worker, very motivated and doing very well with his physical therapy program. “
Diaz takes this challenge on a daily basis.
“It’s hard, but remember, don’t get hurt and don’t get hurt,” Diaz said.
Erwin works out with David three times a week, doing laps in his exoskeleton until they’re both tired and sweaty. Diaz says it’s all worth it.
“It’s amazing because I was so tired of being in a wheelchair for about twelve years. So now we’re trying something different.”
Erwin will continue to work with the device in the coming weeks until he is ready to use it without assistance. Although he soon walks without help, he does not walk without support.
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