I recently read a piece on the AlterG and was impressed with the technology and excited about the possibilities of this treadmill system. Initially I knew little about this particular advanced rehabilitation option. As a healthcare and technology geek new equipment is exciting and as I learned more, I found myself suddenly wanting an AlterG treadmill.
This unit as it is today does has a few challenges in certain markets and clinic types primarily due to its cost. On the other hand I personally see great potential with increased rehabilitation options for patients. Furthermore I know other healthcare geeks (Healthview staff) who would be as excited as myself to see one of these treadmills arrive at our door.
This NASA technology was originally designed to recreate the effects of gravity for astronauts in space.
| || |
It did this by lowering the pressure inside the bag therefore pushing the astronaut down. The system would allow an astronaut to run at near normal earth weight. The design however was never fully utilized and the technology was eventually licensed to the AlterG company.
AlterG found a use for this concept but instead used it to decrease the effects of gravity and could reduce a persons body weight by up to 80%. This decrease in body weight reduces overall stresses on the lower extremities making it ideal for rehabilitation of specific injuries and conditions.
The ALTERG at the moment is a little pricey and can cost up to $100,000 CDN depending on the model. As with most newer technologies as it becomes more popular the price will adjust accordingly and in turn make it more accessible. In fact I would expect it to be a standard piece of clinic equipment in any proper rehabilitation setting in the next 10 years.