The way to activate denerved muscles again
The RISE Stimulator is a new development in the field of functional electrical stimulation. Contrary to our FES-Box, the RISE Stimulator can also be used in flaccid (non-spastic) paralysis, also called lower motor neuron lesion. It enables you to stimulate denervated muscle tissue that cannot be reached with the FES-Box. Sometimes, it is even possible to stimulate the leg and buttocks muscles in such a way that the person can stand upright, assisted by the electrical impulses.
If you have incurred an injury with paralyzing effects, and you don’t experience any spasms, your muscles have to be stimulated directly with long electrical impulses and high voltages. This is exactly what the RISE Stimulator brings to the table.
If you have incurred an injury with paralyzing effects, and you experience spasms from time to time, your nerves are still intact, and muscles can be stimulated indirectly via their motor-nerves with short impulses from the FES-Box.
The RISE Stimulator is a standalone simulator. It is not combinable with further physical training equipment such as the BerkelBike. The RISE Stimulator was designed for people suffering from spinal cord injury with denervated muscles. However, sometimes people with peripheral nerve damage or brachial plexus injury can also benefit from its powerful electrical impulses.
Treatment with the RISE-Stimulator should be started as soon as possible, but at least in less than 10 years post injury. If you want to receive personal advice, fill out our “Ask the Expert” form.
Strengths of the RISE Stimulator
Using the RISE Stimulator
The simplicity and compactness of the RISE Stimulator make it a unique device perfectly suitable for home use. You just have to apply some conductive gel to the attached electrodes, and place them on the muscle groups that you want to stimulate. There are elastic bands to keep the electrodes in place during the stimulation process. The stimulation can be easily set and operated using the keyboard and the display.
Increase in muscle mass
If used regularly, the RISE Stimulator can trigger remarkable muscle growth and recovery. The following pictures from an MRI scan show how the leg muscles have grown after training with the RISE stimulator.
Both pictures show cross-sections of the legs of two persons. The upper four photos belong to one person, and the bottom four to another. The photos on the left were taken before the treatment, and the photos on the right show the condition after four years of regular stimulation with the RISE Stimulator.
Black/white = Cross section of the bone
Red = Muscle tissue
Recovery of muscle tissue and structure
Electric stimulation not only causes an increase in muscle mass, it is also associated with recovery of the structure within the muscle tissue. Picture A is an electron microscope photo of a muscle in a longitudinal direction. Under normal circumstances, vertical lines should be visible within the muscle tissue. This muscle, however, has not been active for about ten months, and the structure almost disappeared completely.
Picture D is a photo of the same muscle, but this picture was taken after a year and a half of stimulation with the RISE Stimulator. The difference is striking; the structure of the muscle tissue, as shown by the vertical lines in the right picture, has become clearly visible.
Who can benefit from the RISE Stimulator?
A flaccid paralysis is caused by damage to the nerves of the muscles, and is accompanied by a complete loss of muscle function. Because of the nerve damage, there are no involuntary contractions or spasms in flaccid paralysis. Examples of disabilities that benefit specifically from the RISE are plexis brachialis, spinal cord injuries with cauda equina syndrome, and medullaris syndrome.
Such denervated muscles can only be stimulated directly. That means muscles aren’t stimulated via their corresponding nerves, but electric impulses are directly applied to the muscle tissue. To cause a contraction of the muscle, direct stimulation requires longer and more powerful electric impulses than indirect stimulation (as with our FES-Box).
The RISE Stimulator offers such electric output with impulses that are up to 300 mA strong, and up to 200 milliseconds long. Our FES-Box, on the other hand, offers indirect electric stimulation, which is only suitable for paralyzed muscles with intact motor-nerves.
Medical conditions and restrictions
Whether the RISE Stimulator is suitable for you depends on your medical condition. Because the stimulation is so much stronger than with nerve stimulation, the exclusion criteria are more severe: Stimulation over a metal implant is prohibited,. Also, people with a pacemaker, a bladder stimulator, or artificial pumps require approval of your physiologist. Furthermore, the RISE Stimulator should not be used during pregnancy, because it is not tested on pregnant woman.
It's a great workout for my legs and it also gives me freedom!
Bob van der Aa - NC Brain Damage
I cycle outside for scenery and indoors for comfort.
Sanet Taljaard - Incomplete SCI T12
The Berkelbike feels like instantly getting a 'new life'.
Funda Müjde - Incomplete SCI L1
I’ve cycled for over 80 kilometers in a timespan of three days.
Arnold Weisser - Incomplete SCI L1
I found that from using the BerkelBike bending pain went away!
Emily Holt - MS