A 63-year-old man, who has been unable to walk since he contracted Polio as a child, has become the first person to be fitted with a lower limb bionic exoskeleton.

John Simpson, a father-of-three from south London, has been fitted with a new ‘bionic’ leg brace, which is made from carbon fibre and powered by Bluetooth. It uses a built-in microprocessor and sensors to intuitively move as the user moves and is powered by a simple battery that requires charging each night.

The brace is less painful than the locked-knee steel calliper Mr Simpson wore previously as it takes the strain off his shoulders, back and other leg.

Since Mr Simpson starting using the new lower limb brace, he has not only been able to walk naturally, but also take the stairs, cycle and play golf. He claims that the technology has ‘revolutionised’ his life.

Imogen Wetton, a serious injury solicitor based in Thompsons Solicitors’ Manchester office, said:
“There is currently a lot of research being done into technology to help those who have lost a limb or the use of a limb, and, while a lot of the devices are very expensive, it is still hugely positive to see developments like this.

“Not only does this technology offer users improved mobility, but it also has clearly had a positive effect on Mr Simpson’s general wellbeing as it has meant that he can take part in sport and leisure activities.

“At Thompsons, we closely monitor developments in technology which could help to enhance the lives of our clients who have suffered serious injuries. We look forward to seeing how exoskeleton technology may develop further and hope it is something that will become increasingly more accessible.”